► Show Top 10 Hot Links

Archive for the ‘UK’ Category

How the only pilot to thwart a gunman at 29,000 feet, did it

by Speranza ( 109 Comments › )
Filed under Israel, Palestinians, Terrorism, UK at April 4th, 2014 - 7:00 am

As two commenters wrote The best lesson to be learned from this hero: “As long as you know you’re not going to allow it to happen, then you’ll find the way.”  and That reminds me of Hannibal’s line: We will find a way or we will make one.” Is any one surprised that the British authorities treated the crew of the El Al plane almost as if they were the  criminals?

by Mitch Ginsburg

With the world’s attention focused on Malaysia Airlines Flight 370, a retired El Al pilot, a veteran of five armed hijacking attempts and plots, including one movie-worthy standoff at 29,000 feet, splashed some local brandy into his afternoon tea.

“When you don’t know, you just don’t know,” Uri Bar-Lev said of the fate of the airliner, speaking two weeks after it dropped off the radar.

 [......]

The Times of Israel mentioned the missing plane and hinted at his heroics. We said there might be a lesson to be learned or simply a tale worth re-telling.  [......]

On September 6, 1970, Bar-Lev, who had flown as a 16-year-old in the 1948 War of Independence and later during the 1956 War, was picked up from his Amsterdam hotel and brought to Schiphol airport to fly the second leg of El Al Flight 219 from Tel Aviv to New York. Before take-off, El Al’s security officer on duty at the airport told the pilot that there were four suspicious people seeking to board the flight. Two held Senegalese passports with consecutive numbers; two others, a couple, carried less suspicious looking Honduran passports, but all had ordered their tickets at the last minute.

Bar-Lev, in consultation with the security officer, barred the Senegalese passengers from boarding and demanded that the local security officers closely inspect the two Honduran nationals before allowing them to board.

Although at the time he did not know that no such inspection had been performed, he stopped at seat 2C and had a chat with Avihu Kol, one of the two armed security officers on the plane. “I told him, I want you in the cockpit with me,” Bar-Lev said.

Kol was alone in first class. He might as well have been wearing a sign that said air marshal. “Someone could just come up behind him and shoot him in the head,” Bar-Lev said, recalling that Kol had warned him about just such a scenario two weeks before.

[.......]Yet El Al was the only airline in the world to field armed guards and re-enforced steel cockpit doors — precautions that had been put in place after the 1968 hijacking of an El Al jet to Algeria, the only time Israel’s national carrier has been hijacked. Kol, though, initially resisted Bar-Lev’s demand that he sit in the cockpit, saying it contradicted his orders. Finally, Bar-Lev pulled rank.

At 29,000 feet, with the plane still climbing, the emergency light flashed in the cockpit. False alarm, one of the crew members said. It happened often. Flight attendants sometimes grazed against the warning panels, sounding the alarm. “No,” Bar-Lev responded, “we’re being hijacked.”

Seconds later a flight attendant’s voice came through the intercom: two people, armed with a gun and two grenades, wanted to enter the cockpit. If he didn’t open the door, they would blow up the plane.

Bar-Lev sent flight engineer Uri Zach to look through the peep hole. The “Honduran” man, Nicaraguan-American Sandinista supporter Patrick Argüello, a former Fulbright scholar operating on behalf of George Habash’s Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine (PFLP), was holding a gun to a female flight attendant’s head. Uri, she said to the pilot through the locked door, they are going to kill me if you don’t open up.

According to the International Air Transport Association rules, Bar-Lev said, a pilot is responsible “for the welfare of his passengers” and therefore must acquiesce to the demands of terrorists. His thinking was just the opposite: acceding will only further endanger the passengers. Giving voice to an unformed thought, he said aloud, “We are not going to be taken hostage.”

Sitting in the right-hand seat, having let the co-pilot handle the take-off from Amsterdam, Bar-Lev recalled his mandatory training on the Boeing 707 at the company headquarters several years earlier.  [......] He wanted to know the outer limits of the plane’s capacity. The instructor, a Korean War vet, walked him through some of the maneuvers and explained that the passenger plane was very strong and could endure more than it would seem at first glance.

The plane began to plummet, dropping 10,000 feet in a minute

Bar-Lev told Kol, the air marshal, to hold on tight. He was going to throw the plane into a dive. The negative g-force, akin to the feeling one gets on the downhill section of a roller coaster ride, would accomplish two things: it would lower the plane’s altitude, reducing the pressure difference between the inside and outside of the plane, which would make a bullet hole or a grenade explosion less dangerous; and it would throw the hijackers off their feet. The passengers, he said, were all belted in and would be fine.

Bar-Lev lifted the nose of the aircraft, dipped one of the wings, and then tilted the nose down to earth. The plane began to plummet, dropping 10,000 feet in a minute. When he pulled out of the dive, Kol charged through the door and killed Argüello.

The second terrorist, Leila Khaled, a Palestinian veteran of previous skyjackings, rolled a grenade forward but it didn’t explode. In her memoir, Bar-Lev said, Khaled claimed to have been violently subdued, but the air marshals found her passed out from the dive and quickly arrested her.

“The whole thing took two and a half minutes,” Bar-Lev said.

A photo of the two airliners that were hijacked and flown to Jordan on that September 6, 1970 (photo credit: wiki)

But it was far from over. Three other planes, in what Bar-Lev called a more complex attack than 9-11, had been hijacked. The two men carrying Senegalese passports had commandeered a Pan Am flight and flown it to Egypt. TWA and Swiss Air flights were flown to Jordan. The Shin Bet, via an El Al dispatcher, sent Bar-Lev a terse command: About face. Come home.

On board he had two armed Shin Bet officers — Kol, and a second agent who was at the back of the plane — plus a dead man and an internationally wanted terrorist. Pivotally, though, he also learned that Shlomo Vider, the chief flight attendant, had charged the hijackers and been shot several times. Before responding to the Shin Bet’s orders – Bar-Lev didn’t know and wasn’t told about the other hijackings – he called for a doctor to come forward and examine Vider. The most qualified person was a dentist. He ruled that Vider was in stable condition. “I didn’t think so, though,” said Bar-Lev. Vider was pale and though he had been shot, he didn’t seem to be bleeding out, raising concerns about internal bleeding.

[......]

Headquarters again ordered him to return to Israel, but Bar-Lev contacted the British authorities and began to descend. En route, he heard the voice of an El Al pilot preparing to take off from Heathrow to Israel. “I told him to switch to the internal frequency,” Bar-Lev said.

Speaking quickly and in Hebrew, he told the other pilot the situation and the plan: he would land near him. In the commotion, no one would notice if the two armed Shin Bet marshals slipped through the flight engineer’s maintenance door between the wheels and quickly boarded the Israel-bound plane in the same way. The last thing he needed was for the two to be arrested by the local authorities and possibly charged for killing Argüello.

He insisted that he had simply flown the plane throughout and did not know how the Nicaraguan terrorist had died

Bar-Lev had good reason for concern. In February 1969 a Shin Bet air marshal named Mordechai Rachamim had fought off a squad of terrorists attacking an El Al plane in Zurich. After jumping out of the airplane door under fire, apprehending three of the terrorists and killing the fourth, the Swiss authorities, before finally exonerating him, first put him on trial for manslaughter.

After Bar-Lev slowed the plane to a stop, the crew welcomed an emergency British medical team on board. Vider, he later learned, reached the local hospital an estimated five minutes from death. But when Bar-Lev tried to close the door and head back to Tel Aviv, several armed agents from the British secret services drew their sidearms and said, “Do not shut that door. You are on the soil of Great Britain.”

Bar-Lev and the rest of the crew were taken for interrogation. Asked what he told the British authorities, he said, “I told them nothing.” He insisted that he had simply flown the plane throughout and did not know how the Nicaraguan terrorist had died.

An El Al security officer, in the meanwhile, printed tickets for the two Shin Bet air marshals who had slipped onto the Israel-bound flight and, after going through the passenger list repeatedly, the British authorities were forced to let the plane take off.

Bar-Lev and the crew were released the following day. The British authorities knew they were lying but could find no proof. Leila Khaled remained in the United Kingdom. She was let out of British custody three weeks later, after a British jet was hijacked on September 9, en route from Bahrain, expressly in order to secure her release.

For Bar-Lev, though, the ordeal was still not over. Upon return to Israel, a man he did not recognize took him into a side room and began asking questions: Why had he insisted on bringing the sky marshal into the cockpit? Why had he refused a direct order to return to Tel Aviv? Why had he dismissed the dentist’s assessment?

The next day, El Al Director General Mordechai Ben-Ari told him that the Shin Bet would not provide security for Israel’s national air carrier so long as he remained an active pilot. Ben-Ari tried to convince him to take a year off, to pacify the Shin Bet, and then return to service.

[......]

He phoned Golda Meir and asked to explain his side of the story. After giving his version of events to Meir, Moshe Dayan and the head of the Shin Bet at the time, he was given a two-week holiday and then reinstated, with honors for bravery.

Several months after that, then-transportation minister Shimon Peres helped pass a new law that gave pilots the right to resist hijackings and immunity against foreign lawsuits, such as the one Pan Am filed against Bar-Lev for not alerting the airline to the danger posed by the two Senegalese men and the one the British authorities briefly pursued – to charge Bar-Lev as an accomplice to murder.

Today, though, he said, despite the thousands of deaths caused by airline terror since that day in September 1970, there is still not a consensus among airlines that pilots are part of the inner circle of protection against terror. Lamenting the tragedy of 9/11, and the way 2,977 innocent people were killed by 19 hijackers wielding household objects such as penknives, he said the “formula for prevention” is for the crew to be trained, in mind more than in body, to resist.

“As long as you know you’re not going to allow it to happen, then you’ll find the way,” he said.

Read the rest – How to thwart a gunman at 29,000 feet, by the only pilot who ever did

Lloyd George’s War

by Speranza ( 235 Comments › )
Filed under France, Germany, History, UK at March 27th, 2014 - 1:00 pm

This BBC Timewatch documentary from 2005 examines the effects of David Lloyd George as British Prime Minister during World War I. It also features a critical analysis of his relationship with Field Marshal Sir Douglas Haig as well as Lloyd George’s impact on the perceived history of the Great War in the 1920s. British Expeditionary Force commander Sir Douglas Haig had a well deserved reputation of being a commander who was profligate with the lives of his soldiers. Lloyd George recognizing that two British army’s had been pretty much destroyed - the first being the small professional army of 1914 was just about wiped out at Ypres in the Autumn of 1914, the second was the Kitchener Army which was raised after the destruction of the first army and was bled white at the Somme in 1916 and Passchendale in 1917. When  the great Ludendorff Offensive in the Spring  of 1918 (21 March – 18 July 1918)  opened with some initial tactical successes against the British, Haig desperately needed reinforcements while Lloyd George held them back until the right time because he did not want Haig to destroy a third army. Nevertheless, Haig was ultimately reinforced and he finally developed into a good commander and with the cooperation  of the French, Belgian, and the newly arrived American Expeditionary Force defeated the German Army during the Hundred Days Offensives (July 18 – November 11, 1918). Lloyd George was incorrect in his belief that Germany’s allies Austria-Hungary and Turkey were propping up Germany when it was in fact Germany that was propping up them.

I do not agree with the revisionists who claim it would not have made much of a difference if Germany had won World War I. The Germany of the Kaiser was an appalling regime which was completely imperialist. We now know that had Germany won, their demands on the defeated French and Belgians would have been absolutely brutal regarding territorial annexations, economic exploitations and crushing indemnities designed to cripple France for decades (see the Treaty of Brest Litovsk and the Treaty of Bucharest for two good examples). The big mistake the Allies made was in their refusing to deal with dictators and insisting that only a civilian German government should sign the armistice. This allowed the arch reactionaries to falsely claim that the German army was never defeated. In May 1945 the allies did not make that mistake and they insisted that the German Army surrender and that the surrender but unconditional  with no German soldiers marching back to Germany with their weapons and signs proclaiming that they never were defeated.

A critical evaluation of Field marshal Douglas Haig giving both sides of the story.

Why Obama will not shift gears on foreign policy; and indivsible anti-Semitism

by Speranza ( 88 Comments › )
Filed under Anti-semitism, Cold War, History, Holocaust, Iran, Israel, Judaism, Koran, Libya, Palestinians, UK, World War II at March 19th, 2014 - 7:13 am

Miss Glick feels that Obama’s feckless foreign policy is motivated by his rather hostile feelings about America’s history both foreign and domestic.

by Caroline Glick

Just before Russian President Vladimir Putin orchestrated Russia’s takeover of Crimea, the US’s Broadcasting Board of Governors that controls Radio Free Europe and Radio Liberty announced that it will be ending its broadcast to Iraq and the Balkans next year.

And this makes sense. As far as the Obama administration is concerned, Iraq ceased to exist in 2011, when the last US forces got out of the country.

As for the Baltics, well, really who cares about them? Russia, after all, wants the same things America does. Everything will be fine.

As Obama said to Governor Mitt Romney during one of the 2012 presidential debates, “The 1980s are now calling to ask for their foreign policy back because the Cold War’s been over for 20 years.”

During the election, Obama was famously caught on an open microphone promising President Putin’s stand-in Dmitry Medvedev that he would have “more flexibility,” on missile defense after the presidential election.

He asked Medvedev to ask Putin to give him “more space” until after November 2012.

With a five-and-half-year record of selling US allies like Poland, the Czech Republic and even the Syrian opposition out to please Putin, it should be obvious that Obama will do nothing effective to show Putin the error of his ways in Ukraine.

Obama doesn’t have a problem with Putin.

And as long as Putin remains anti-American, he will have no reason to be worried about Obama.

Consider Libya. Three years ago this week, NATO forces supported by the US began their campaign to bring down Libyan dictator Muammar Gaddafi.

As Patrick Coburn noted in The Independent over the weekend, the same Western forces who insisted that their “responsibility to protect” the Libyan people from a possible massacre by Gaddafi’s forces compelled them to bring down Gaddafi and his regime have had nothing to say today about the ongoing bloodbath in post-Gaddafi Libya.

[......]

But Gaddafi, the neutered dictator who quit the terrorism and nuclear-proliferation rackets after the US-led invasion of Iraq, is gone. So no one cares.

Coburn mentioned the recent documentary aired on Al Jazeera – America that upended the West’s narrative that the bombing of Pan Am 103 in 1988 over Lockerbie, Scotland, was the work of the Libyan government. According to a credible Iranian defector, the attack was ordered by Iran and carried out by Palestinian terrorists from Ahmed Jibril’s PFLP-GC.

He wrote, “the documentary emphasizes the sheer number of important politicians and senior officials over the years who must have looked at intelligence reports revealing the truth about Lockerbie, but still happily lied about it.”

If the Al Jazeerah documentary is correct, there is good reason for the public in the US, Europe and throughout the world to be angry about the cover-up.

But there is no reason to be surprised.

Since its inception, the Iranian regime has been at war with the US. It has carried out one act of aggression after another. These have run the gamut from the storming of the US Embassy in Tehran and holding hostage US diplomats for 444 days, to the use of Lebanese and Palestinian proxies to murder US officials, citizens and soldiers in countless attacks over the intervening 35 years, to building a military presence in Latin America, to developing nuclear weapons.

[.......]
A similar situation obtains with the Palestinians. Like the Iranians, the PLO has carried out countless acts of terrorism that have killed US officials and citizens.

From the 1970 Fatah execution of the US ambassador and deputy chief of mission in Khartoum to the 2003 bombing of the US embassy convoy in Gaza, the PLO has never abandoned terrorism against the US.

No less importantly, the PLO is the architect of modern terrorism. From airline hijackings, to the massacre of schoolchildren, from bus bombings to the destabilization of nation states, the PLO is the original author of much of the mayhem and global terrorism the US has led the fight against since the 1980s.

And of course, the PLO’s main stated goal is the destruction of Israel, the US’s only dependable ally, and the only liberal democracy in the Middle East.

[.......]

In many ways, then the Obama administration is simply a loyal successor of previous administrations. But in one essential way, it is also different.

IN A 2006 op-ed in The Wall Street Journal, civil rights historian Shelby Steele argued that the reason the US has lost every war it has fought since World War II despite the fact that it has had the military might to vanquish all of its enemies is “white guilt.”

White guilt, he argued, makes its sufferers in the West believe that they lack the moral authority to act due to the stigma of white supremacy and imperialism.

Writing of the then raging insurgency in Iraq, Steele explained, “When America – the greatest embodiment of Western power – goes to war in Third World Iraq, it must also labor to dissociate that action from the great Western sin of imperialism. Thus in Iraq we are in two wars, one against an insurgency and the other against the past – two fronts, two victories to win, one military, the other a victory of dissociation.”

This neurotic view of America’s moral underpinning is what explains the instinctive American tendency to strike out at those who do not oppose the West – like Gaddafi’s regime in Libya and Hosni Mubarak’s regime in Egypt – while giving a pass to those who do – like the Palestinians and the Iranians.

But whereas white guilt has afflicted the US leadership for the past several generations, past administrations were willing to set it aside when necessary to advance US national security interests.

This cannot happen with Obama.

Obama owes his presidency to white guilt. His promise to American voters was that by voting for him, they would expiate their guilt for the sins of European imperialists and southern racists.

It was the American desire to move beyond the past that enabled a first-term senator with radical connections and the most liberal voting record in the Senate to get elected to the presidency.

But tragically for the US and the free world, Obama’s worldview is informed not by an appreciation for what Steele extolled as America’s “moral transformation,” on issue of race. Rather it is informed by his conviction that the US deserves its guilt.

Obama does not share Bill Clinton’s view that the US is “the indispensable nation,” although he invoked the term on the campaign trail in 2012.

From his behavior toward foe and friend alike, Obama gives the impression that he does not believe the US has the right to stand up for its interests.

Moreover, his actions from Israel to Eastern Europe to Egypt and Libya indicate that he believes there is something wrong with nations that support and believe in the US.

Their pro-Americanism apparently makes them guilty of white guilt by association.

So Iran, the Palestinians and Russia needn’t worry. Obama will not learn from his mistakes, because as far as he is concerned, he hasn’t made any.

Read the rest - Why Obama will not shift gears

Miss Glick feels that one cannot condemn anti-Semtism and the same time seek to demonize and harm the Jewish State. Hence she feels that the U.N. International Holocaust Memorial Day gives the world’s anti-Semites a fig leaf of “moral authority” to engage in virulent anti-Semitism.

by Caroline Glick

On March 19, it will be two years since Mohammed Merah slaughtered three Jewish children and a rabbi in the courtyard of the Ozar Hatorah Jewish day school in Toulouse, France.

Far from being a wake-up call that forced the French to their senses, and compelled them to purge their society of the Jew-hatred that inspired Merah to film himself blowing his victims’ brains out, his act served as an inspiration for other anti-Semites.

According to the French Interior Ministry, anti-Semitic attacks rose 60 percent in 2012 over 2011 levels.

Over the past decade and a half, anti-Semitism has moved from the backroom to the living room throughout Europe.

All aspects of Jewish life are under assault.

Religious observance has become an act of near rebellion against social graces.

In 2009, the British Supreme Court ruled that Jewish schools that followed religious tradition and only admitted children who have a Jewish mother were guilty of racial discrimination.

In other words, the British Supreme Court said that traditional Judaism is racist.

In country after country, campaigns to ban Jewish ritual practices are in full swing. Government after government has passed or moved toward passing bans on shechita, Jewish traditional slaughter of animals. Mila, infant male circumcision, is also under assault. Both, of course, are foundations of Jewish observance.

[.......]
Of course, even more popular than accusing Jews of subjecting cows and chickens to monstrous slaughter is the practice of accusing Jews of subjecting Palestinians to monstrous slaughter.

For Europe’s elite, radical and increasingly, violent anti-Zionism has become the anti-Semitism of choice. Among other things, anti-Zionists believe that Israel is inherently illegitimate and necessarily, and purposely, evil. For them, Israel is Nazi Germany.

And supporters of Israel are for them the greatest evildoers in the world. They should be accorded no courtesy, and be treated as human scum.

This has been made clear, most vividly in recent years on college campuses where pro-Israel supporters are run off campuses, shouted off stages and barred from presenting their views.

One recent episode of this sort occurred on March 5 at the National University of Ireland, Galway, where British professor Alan Johnson tried to speak in opposition to an initiative to get the university to join the boycott, divestment and sanctions movement against Israel.

A YouTube video of the event showed how a mob of BDS supporters prevented him from speaking. They shouted curses at him and his colleagues and demanded they “get the f*** off our campus!” Writing of the experience and the hate movement that stands behind it in The Times of Israel, Johnson reported that the student leading the effort to silence him is the head of NUIG’s Palestine Solidarity Society named Joseph Loughnane.

[........]

Johnson wrote that “the border between being radical and transgressive [toward Israel] and being anti-Semitic is now porous.”

Although accurate, Johnson’s assertion understates the problem.

Opposing Judaism and Jews, denying Jewish rights to education and ritual observance, and attacking Jews; and opposing the Jewish state, denying Jews their right to self-determination and attacking supporters of the Jewish state, are two sides of the same coin. There is no border – porous or solid between them. They are one and the same.

And all anti-Semites know it.

On Monday, The New York Times reported that attempts by French authorities to silence the anti-Semitic comic Dieudonne M’bala M’bala have backfired. The performer who invented and popularized the inverted Nazi salute has bridged the divide between French Muslim anti-Semites and French fascist anti-Semites.

The habit of Dieudonne’s fans to have their pictures taken at Jewish sites and Nazi death camps while performing the salute caused French officials to ban his public performances, arguing reasonably that his incendiary anti-Semitic incitement is a threat to public safety.

Rather than listen to authorities and recognize that Dieudonne’s actions are obscene, hateful and dangerous, the official ban on his performances has only raised his popularity. According to the Times, his most recent YouTube video had two million hits in its first week.

[.........]
But this is not the real reason that the ban has backfired.

The ban backfired because the French don’t take the government seriously.

How can it be wrong for Frenchmen to parade through the streets of Paris ordering the Jews to leave the country, when the French government also trucks in anti-Semitism? How can French authorities’ 14-year defense of France 2 television network’s invention of the Muhammad al-Dura blood libel be squared with their denunciation of Dieudonne? It will be recalled that in October 2000, France 2’s Israel correspondent Charles Enderlain broadcast a story where he presented doctored footage that created the illusion Dura had been killed while crouching in fear, by venal IDF soldiers in Gaza. That doctored footage served as the impetus for massive anti-Semitic demonstrations, and murderous anti-Semitic attacks on Jews in Israel, throughout Europe and around the world.

In January 2006, Ilan Halimi was kidnapped and tortured to death because he was a Jew.

Despite the fact that during his 26 days in captivity Halimi’s kidnappers telephoned his mother 700 times, during which she heard the tortured cries of her son while his kidnappers recited verses from the Koran over the phone, French law enforcement officials insisted that Halimi’s abduction was a run-of-the-mill kidnapping for ransom, rather than an anti-Semitic hate crime. Consequently they refused to accept that his life was in danger, or that they should devote resources to finding and saving him.

And their denial of the nature of the crime didn’t end when Halimi turned up naked, at the railway siding, with burns over 80 percent of his body, only to die shortly thereafter.

It took French authorities another week to acknowledge that Halimi was murdered because he was a Jew.

Two years ago, French authorities tried to hide the fact that Merah was a Muslim, claiming instead that he was a Nazi. When they were finally forced to acknowledge the truth, they blamed Israel for his crime.

Speaking to reporters, then-French interior minister Claude Gueant said that Merah was associated with al-Qaida and that he was upset about what Gueant referred to as Israel’s “murder” of Palestinian children.

The 17,000 Frenchmen who marched through the streets of Paris on the eve of International Holocaust Memorial Day in January and called for the Jews to get out of France see through French authorities’ hypocrisy.

French and other European authorities who libel Israel by projecting onto the Jewish state the crimes committed by Muslim terrorists against Jewish children do not scare the likes of Dieudonne and his millions of supporters.

[......]

And they certainly are not convinced of the error of their ways.

The simple fact is that you cannot fight anti-Semitism by endorsing it. The only way you can fight anti-Semitism is by fighting all forms of anti-Semitism, including the demonization and delegitimization of Israel.

The European have good company in denying this basic fact. Senior American Jewish leaders similarly ignore it.

EARLIER THIS month, the Anti-Defamation League and the American Jewish Committee announced their opposition to state bills barring universities from using public funds to fund academic organizations that participate in boycotts against Israel. Bills of this type are being debated by the Maryland and New York state legislatures and are being drafted at the federal level by members of Congress.

Both groups claimed that they oppose the bills even though they oppose the BDS movement, because they claim that such actions limit academic freedom.

Three things stand out in their explanation.

First, preventing taxpayer money from being used to fund campaigns to demonize and criminalize Israel and so promote hatred of Jews has nothing to do with limiting academic freedom.

Second, the actions of BDS activists have nothing to do with academic freedom. By demonizing and intimidating students and faculty who oppose them, their aim is to end both free speech and academic freedom.

And conversely, fighting them advances both free speech and academic freedom.

Finally, it is simply bizarre that the ADL and the AJC felt compelled to weigh in on this issue to begin with. If they didn’t want to be associated with this action, they could have kept their mouths shut.

By entering the fray on behalf of the BDS movement, they gave legitimacy to it, despite their claims that they oppose anti-Israel boycotts.

Both the ADL and the AJC present themselves as among other things, Jewish civil rights groups that aim to defend Jews, including the Jewish state.

And yet, here they are making an artificial distinction between the two – a distinction not shared by the haters.

It is no doubt tempting to accept the artificial distinction between rejecting Israel’s right to exist and rejecting the right of Jews to practice Judaism. Doing so allows you to pretend that the problem isn’t as bad as it is, and to pretend that the fates of Israel and Jews of the Diaspora are not directly linked. It allows you to pretend that Jewish Americans who join the BDS movement are not anti-Semites. And it allows you to pretend that European leaders who minimize real anti-Semitic crimes by equating them with imaginary Israeli crimes are not inherently hostile to Jews.

But you cannot fight Jew-hatred by making distinctions between its various forms. They are all components of the same thing. And either you fight all of them, with no distinction, or you fight none of them, and even legitimize the bigotry.

Read the rest – Indivisible anti-Semitism

Now the Jews are going to get it!

by Speranza ( 84 Comments › )
Filed under Anti-semitism, History, Israel, Palestinians, UK at March 4th, 2014 - 7:00 am

The hatred of the British aristocracy for Israel and Jews has become rather palpable. Note that this was in 1967 before any “settlements” and “occupations”. Forty-seven years later the embers of hatred still burns brightly.

hat tip - Israellycool

by Douglas Davis

After all the gossip and speculation it’s time to come clean: Scarlett Johansson and I are more than just good friends. Much, much more. Yes, we have shared moments of intimacy – not, alas, together, or even at the same time.

But we are both alumni of Oxfam, that billion-dollar arbiter of humanitarian aid, political profundity and universal morality. It doesn’t matter that we graduated almost half a century apart. It doesn’t even matter that we’ve never actually met. Or that she doesn’t know I exist. We have both shared the Oxfam Moment.

Last month, Oxfam announced that Scarlett Johansson’s support for an Israeli company operating in a Jewish settlement was incompatible with her continued role as an Oxfam Ambassador. She was faced with a stark choice: continue her association with Oxfam or support SodaStream, the Israeli fizzy drink manufacturer in Mishor Adumim, just across the Green Line. Ms Johansson chose SodaStream.

In a statement, the Hollywood actress declared that she and Oxfam have “a fundamental difference of opinion in regards to the boycott, divestment and sanctions movement”. She was, she added, “very proud of her accomplishments and fund-raising efforts during her tenure with Oxfam”.

SodaStream employs about 500 Palestinians alongside a similar number of Jewish employees.  [......]

In a debate on Newsnight, the BBC’s flagship current affairs programme, SodaStream CEO Daniel Birnbaum insisted that his company was not in the business of financing settlements. On the contrary, he said, “we are part of the Palestinian economy”, where unemployment is running at about 40 per cent. Moreover, the company had been operating in the territories for 17 years. “And the inconvenient truth,” he added, “is that we are operating with the agreement of the Palestinian Authority.”

But Ben Phillips, the policy director of Oxfam, was unmoved: ‘This is not about SodaStream or celebrities. It’s about settlements, which impoverish the Palestinian people.” SodaStream must go, he said, even if that means plunging 500 Palestinians into unemployment and 5,000 into poverty. Stalin would have been proud. As far as Oxfam is concerned, it seems, Palestine can only be Palestine when it is judenrein. Now haven’t we heard that before?

When I arrived in London, a deracinated refugee from apartheid South Africa, poor in cash but rich in far-left ideology, I was ripe for a job at Oxfam. I moved to Oxford and settled into Oxfam’s one-person press office, effectively the spokesman of the organisation. [.......] It helped that I did not think of myself as a Jew, and no one else did either.

My South African credentials offered instant access to far-left circles in Oxford, but it bothered me that my new-found comrades, mostly at the university, liberally peppered our conversations with casual, gratuitous anti-Semitism. The Jews, it seemed, were at the root of the world’s ills.

But my Oxfam Moment came one summer’s evening when a senior Oxfam executive invited me to dinner at his sumptuous home in the rolling Oxfordshire countryside. [.......] As an afterthought, he asked the butler to bring out his portable radio so that we could listen to the news. It was, after all, the first day of the Six Day War.

The BBC faithfully reported claims by the Israelis that they had destroyed the air forces of Egypt and Syria on the ground. Then, the newsreader intoned the Arab claims that they had inflicted extensive damage on the Israeli army; that Egyptian tanks were advancing; that they were now 25 kilometres from Tel Aviv.

My urbane host lost his cultivated cool. His elderly body shot into the air, fists pumping at the skies: ‘Now the Jews are going to get it… Now they’re going to get it.’ Remember, Israel occupied no territories, nor had it constructed a single settlement. There could be only one explanation for his jubilation: the prospect of Israel’s imminent destruction. When he recovered his composure, he raised his glass and beamed at me: ‘Wonderful news. Simply wonderful.’  [........] To my shame, I said nothing.

His reaction was more or less typical of the culture I encountered among the loony left, which perceived Jews as arrogant and pushy, while it regarded determined Palestinian displacement as principled and heroic. My own displacement – from the far-left and Oxfam – was now more or less complete.

But the madness of the Sixties never went away. On the contrary, it triumphed. The past half-century has witnessed Europe’s traditional sources of authority – political and church leaders – in full retreat, ceding the moral high ground to bunch of unelected, unaccountable NGOs, like Oxfam, which place themselves on the side of the angels. They set the agenda now.

[.......]

Read the rest – CLAIM: Oxfam Exec delighted: “Now The Jews Are Going To Get It!” On Eve Of ’67 War

Up to 350 UK recruits among 2,000 Westerners now fighting in Syria

by Speranza Comments Off
Filed under Al Qaeda, British Islamic Jihadists, Egypt, Gaza, Headlines, Israel, Pakistan, Palestinians, Syria, UK at February 4th, 2014 - 3:05 pm

No doubt in my mind that these foreign volunteers fighting in Syria will return for more “jihad” at home.

by Mitch Ginsburg

The ongoing war in Syria, a magnet for Islamist fighters looking to participate in jihad, has attracted as many as 2,100 Westerners, a report revealed this week.

The Meir Amit Intelligence and Terrorism Information Center, a civilian organization run by former Israeli intelligence officers, noted a sharp rise in the number of Western recruits in the second half of 2013 and said that the fighters, mostly young men from Western Europe, increased the likelihood of religious war being brought home with fighters returning from the front.

“The foreign fighters in the ranks of the Al-Nusra Front and Islamic State [of Iraq and Greater Syria] are a potential threat to international security,” the authors wrote. Some will return home and “continue their terrorist and subversive activities” on their own initiative; some “may be handled by al-Qaeda…exploiting the personal relationships formed in Syria”; and some, like the veterans of Afghanistan, may sow terror internationally, traveling with a Western passport that raises fewer red flags.

The authors put the total number of foreign fighters at between 6,000 and 7,000, with roughly 4,500 hailing from the predominantly Sunni states of Jordan, Saudi Arabia, Egypt and Libya. They estimated that 15-20 Israeli Arabs were engaged in the war and that, while the number of Palestinians was low, the trickle from Gaza has “risen sharply” over the past several months.

The Israeli fighters, the authors wrote, “veterans of the war in Syria, may be handled for espionage, subversion and terrorism” should they successfully mask their activities and manage to return to Israel. [.....]

The bulk of the Western nationals fighting in Syria are from Europe. The authors ranked Great Britain as the foremost source of recruits, with between 200 and 350 British nationals fighting in Syria. Belgium, Holland and Germany, too, were estimated to have produced over 200 recruits each, predominantly “young men who are second and sometimes third generation Muslim immigrants,” particularly from Pakistan and Morocco, according to the authors of the report.

Last week, the US director of National Intelligence, James Clapper, told the Senate Intelligence Committee that al-Qaeda-like groups operating in Syria are training fighters “to go back to their countries,” according to a recent AP report, and that they “have aspirations for attacks on the homeland.”

[.....]

The Israeli intelligence center, using open sources, put the number of US nationals at “over 70″ and wrote that the sharp rise, up from 12-15 earlier in 2013, “is indicative, in our opinion, of the significant rise in volunteers in the second half of 2013 (and perhaps to the increased attention paid to the phenomenon by the US security and intelligence officials).”

Calling the issue of foreign fighters “a global problem shared by the West, Israel and the Arab-Muslim world,” the authors wrote that international agencies have so far not developed effective methods to monitor, prevent and punish the volunteers.

“The returning foreign fighters are a ticking time bomb,” they wrote, “which can only be defused by international cooperation and joint systems to neutralize their terrorist-subversive potential.”

Read the rest -  Up to 350 UK recruits among 2,000 Westerners now fighitng in Syria

10 World War I myths debunked

by Speranza ( 232 Comments › )
Filed under France, Germany, History, UK, World War II at January 22nd, 2014 - 2:00 pm

As we approach later this year the Centenary of The Great War, there needs to be  a lot of myth debunking.

by Dan Snow

Generals on horseback

Much of what we think we know about the 1914-18 conflict is wrong, writes historian Dan Snow.

No war in history attracts more controversy and myth than World War One.

For the soldiers who fought it was in some ways better than previous conflicts, and in some ways worse.

By setting it apart as uniquely awful we are blinding ourselves to the reality of not just WW1 but war in general. We are also in danger of belittling the experience of soldiers and civilians caught up in countless other appalling conflicts throughout history and the present day.

1. It was the bloodiest war in history to that point

Stretcher bearers, 1918

Fifty years before WW1 broke out, southern China was torn apart by an even bloodier conflict. Conservative estimates of the dead in the 14-year Taiping rebellion start at between 20 and 30 million. Around 17 million soldiers and civilians were killed during WW1.

Although more Britons died in WW1 than any other conflict, the bloodiest war in our history relative to population size is the Civil War which raged in the mid-17th Century. It saw a far higher proportion of the population of the British Isles killed than the less than 2% who died in WW1. By contrast around 4% of the population of England and Wales, and considerably more than that in Scotland and Ireland, are thought to have been killed in the Civil War.

2. Most soldiers died

In the UK around six million men were mobilised, and of those just over 700,000 were killed. That’s around 11.5%.

In fact, as a British soldier you were more likely to die during the Crimean War (1853-56) than in WW1.

Trenches in WW1

Dan Snow

3. Men lived in the trenches for years on end

Front-line trenches could be a terribly hostile place to live. Often wet, cold and exposed to the enemy, units would quickly lose their morale if they spent too much time in them.

As a result, the British army rotated men in and out continuously.  [....]

World war one trench

During moments of crisis, such as big offensives, the British could occasionally spend up to seven days on the front line but were far more often rotated out after just a day or two.

4. The upper class got off lightly

Although the great majority of casualties in WW1 were from the working class, the social and political elite was hit disproportionately hard by WW1. Their sons provided the junior officers whose job it was to lead the way over the top and expose themselves to the greatest danger as an example to their men.

Some 12% of the British army’s ordinary soldiers were killed during the war, compared with 17% of its officers. Eton alone lost more than 1,000 former pupils – 20% of those who served. UK wartime Prime Minister Herbert Asquith lost a son, while future Prime Minister Andrew Bonar Law lost two. Anthony Eden lost two brothers, another brother of his was terribly wounded and an uncle was captured.

5. ‘Lions led by donkeys’

George V and his generals, Buckingham Palace 1918 George V and his generals, Buckingham Palace 1918

“Start Quote

British commanders were thrust into a massive industrial struggle unlike anything the Army had ever seen”

This saying was supposed to have come from senior German commanders describing brave British soldiers led by incompetent old toffs from their chateaux. In fact the incident was made up by historian Alan Clark.

During the war more than 200 generals were killed, wounded or captured. Most visited the front lines every day. In battle they were considerably closer to the action than generals are today.

Naturally, some generals were not up to the job, but others were brilliant, such as Arthur Currie, a middle-class Canadian failed insurance broker and property developer.

Rarely in history have commanders had to adapt to a more radically different technological environment.

British commanders had been trained to fight small colonial wars, now they were thrust into a massive industrial struggle unlike anything the British army had ever seen.

[.....] By the summer of 1918 the British army was probably at its best ever and it inflicted crushing defeats on the Germans.

6. Gallipoli was fought by Australians and New Zealanders

Anzac day marked at Gallipoli, 2011 Australians and New Zealanders mark Anzac Day in Gallipoli, 2011

Far more British soldiers fought on the Gallipoli peninsula than Australians and New Zealanders put together.

The UK lost four or five times as many men in the brutal campaign as her imperial Anzac contingents. The French also lost more men than the Australians.

The Aussies and Kiwis commemorate Gallipoli ardently, and understandably so, as their casualties do represent terrible losses both as a proportion of their forces committed and of their small populations.

7. Tactics on the Western Front remained unchanged despite repeated failure

Never have tactics and technology changed so radically in four years of fighting. It was a time of extraordinary innovation. In 1914 generals on horseback galloped across battlefields as men in cloth caps charged the enemy without the necessary covering fire. Both sides were overwhelmingly armed with rifles. Four years later, steel-helmeted combat teams dashed forward protected by a curtain of artillery shells.

They were now armed with flame throwers, portable machine-guns and grenades fired from rifles. Above, planes, that in 1914 would have appeared unimaginably sophisticated, duelled in the skies, some carrying experimental wireless radio sets, reporting real-time reconnaissance.

Huge artillery pieces fired with pinpoint accuracy – using only aerial photos and maths they could score a hit on the first shot.  [......]

8. No-one won

Swathes of Europe lay wasted, millions were dead or wounded. Survivors lived on with severe mental trauma. The UK was broke. It is odd to talk about winning.

However, in a narrow military sense, the UK and her allies convincingly won. Germany’s battleships had been bottled up by the Royal Navy until their crews mutinied rather than make a suicidal attack against the British fleet.

Germany’s army collapsed as a series of mighty allied blows scythed through supposedly impregnable defences.

By late September 1918 the German emperor and his military mastermind Erich Ludendorff admitted that there was no hope and Germany must beg for peace. The 11 November Armistice was essentially a German surrender.

Unlike Hitler in 1945, the German government did not insist on a hopeless, pointless struggle until the allies were in Berlin – a decision that saved countless lives, but was seized upon later to claim Germany never really lost.

9. The Versailles Treaty was extremely harsh

The treaty of Versailles confiscated 10% of Germany’s territory but left it the largest, richest nation in central Europe.

It was largely unoccupied and financial reparations were linked to its ability to pay, which mostly went unenforced anyway.

The treaty was notably less harsh than treaties that ended the 1870-71 Franco-Prussian War and World War Two. The German victors in the former annexed large chunks of two rich French provinces, part of France for between 2-300 years, and home to most of French iron ore production, as well as presenting France with a massive bill for immediate payment.

Treaty of Versailles Treaty of Versailles, 1919

After WW2 Germany was occupied, split up, her factory machinery smashed or stolen and millions of prisoners forced to stay with their captors and work as slave labourers. Germany lost all the territory it had gained after WW1 and another giant slice on top of that.

Versailles was not harsh but was portrayed as such by Hitler who sought to create a tidal wave of anti-Versailles sentiment on which he could then ride into power.

10. Everyone hated it

Like any war, it all comes down to luck. You may witness unimaginable horrors that leave you mentally and physically incapacitated for life, or you might get away without a scrape. It could be the best of times, or the worst of times.

Many soldiers enjoyed WW1. If they were lucky they would avoid a big offensive, and much of the time, conditions might be better than at home.

German soldiers and Polish girls

For the British there was meat every day – a rare luxury back home – cigarettes, tea and rum, part of a daily diet of over 4,000 calories.

Absentee rates due to sickness, an important barometer of a unit’s morale were, remarkably, hardly above peacetime rates.  [......]

Read the rest - Lions and donkeys: 10 big myths about World War One debunked

What we can learn from the twentieth century’s greatest diplomatic disaster – the Munich conference

by Speranza ( 152 Comments › )
Filed under Afghanistan, France, Germany, History, Iran, Iraq, Islam, Japan, John Kerry, Nazism, Syria, UK, World War II at January 16th, 2014 - 5:00 pm

As the author states, democracy was introduced into Japan and Germany at the point of a gun after those two nations were utterly devastated and had to submit to foreign occupations. No such thing has ever happened to any Islamic nation.  “Nation building” in Iraq and Afghanistan never had a chance in hell of succeeding. The analogies to Munich 1938 are interesting but often misleading.

by Bruce Thornton

During the recent foreign policy crises over Syria’s use of chemical weapons and the Obama administration’s negotiations with Iran, the Munich analogy was heard from both sides of the political spectrum. Arguing for airstrikes against Syria’s Bashar al-Assad, Secretary of State John Kerry warned that the nation faced a “Munich moment.” A few months later, numerous critics of Barack Obama’s diplomatic discussions with Iran evoked Neville Chamberlain’s naïve negotiations with Adolph Hitler. “This wretched deal,” Middle East historian Daniel Pipes said, “offers one of those rare occasions when comparison with Neville Chamberlain in Munich in 1938 is valid.” The widespread resort to the Munich analogy raises the question: When, if ever, are historical analogies useful for understanding present circumstances?

  what economic recovery
Photo credit: Anna Newman

Since the time of the ancient Greeks and Romans, one important purpose of describing historical events was to provide models for posterity. Around 395 B.C., Thucydides wrote that his history was for “those inquirers who desire an exact knowledge of the past as an aid to the understanding of the future, which in the course of human things must resemble if it does not reflect it.” [........]

Both historians believed the past could inform and instruct the present because they assumed that human nature would remain constant in its passions, weaknesses, and interests despite changes in the political, social, or technological environment. As Thucydides writes of the horrors of revolution and civil war, “The sufferings . . . were many and terrible, such as have occurred and always will occur as long as the nature of mankind remains the same; though in severer or milder form, and varying in their symptoms, according to the variety of the particular cases.”  [.........]

In contrast, the modern idea of progress––the notion that greater knowledge of human motivation and behavior, and more sophisticated technology, are changing and improving human nature––suggests that events of the past have little utility in describing the present, and so every historical analogy is at some level false. The differences between two events separated by time and different levels of intellectual and technological sophistication will necessarily outweigh any usefulness. [......]

An example of a historical analogy that failed because it neglected important differences was one popular among those supporting the Bush Doctrine during the conflicts in Iraq and Afghanistan. The Bush Doctrine was embodied in the president’s 2005 inaugural speech: “The survival of liberty in our land increasingly depends on the success of liberty in other lands. The best hope for peace in our world is the expansion of freedom in all the world.” Promoting democracy and political freedom in the Middle East was believed to be the way to eliminate the political, social, and economic dysfunctions that presumably breed Islamic terrorism. Supporters of this view frequently invoked the transformation of Germany, Japan, and the Soviet Union from aggressive tyrannies into peaceful democracies to argue for nation building in the Muslim Middle East.

Natan Sharansky, a former Soviet dissident and political prisoner, used this analogy in his 2004 book The Case for Democracy, which was an important influence on President Bush’s thinking. Yet in citing the examples of Russia, Germany, and Japan as proof that democracy could take root in any cultural soil, including in Iraq and Afghanistan, Sharansky overlooked some key differences. Under Soviet communism, a highly religious Russian people were subjected to an atheist regime radically at odds with the beliefs of the masses. Communism could only promise material goods, and when it serially failed to do so, it collapsed. As for Germany and Japan, both countries were devastated by World War II, their cities and industries destroyed, the ruins standing as stark reminders of the folly of the political ideologies that wreaked such havoc. Both countries were occupied for years by the victors, who had the power and scope to build a new political order enforced by the occupying troops. As political philosopher Michael Mandelbaum reminds us, in Germany and Japan, democracy was introduced at gunpoint.

In Iraq and Afghanistan, neither of these important conditions existed when U.S. forces invaded. The leaders of these countries are Muslim, thus establishing an important connection with the mass of their people. Unlike Nazism and communism, which were political fads, Islam is the faith of 1.5 billion people, and boasts a proud, fourteen-centuries-long history of success and conquest. For millions of pious Muslims, the answer to their modern difficulties lies not in embracing a foreign political system like democracy, but in returning to the purity of faith that created one of the world’s greatest empires. Moreover, no Muslim country has suffered the dramatic physical destruction that Germany and Japan did, which would illuminate the costs of Islam’s failure to adapt to the modern world. Finally, such analogies downplay the complex social and economic values, habits, and attitudes––many contrary to traditional Islamic doctrine––that are the preconditions for a truly democratic regime.

More recently, people are invoking the Munich analogy to describe the Syria and Iran crises. But these critics of Obama’s foreign policy misunderstand the Munich negotiations and their context. The Wall Street Journal’s Bret Stephens, arguing that Obama’s agreement with Iran is worse than the English and French betrayal of Czechoslovakia, based his assessment on his belief that “neither Neville Chamberlain nor [French prime minister] Édouard Daladier had the public support or military wherewithal to stand up to Hitler in September 1938. Britain had just 384,000 men in its regular army; the first Spitfire aircraft only entered RAF service that summer. ‘Peace for our time’ it was not, but at least appeasement bought the West a year to rearm.”

Stephens, however, is missing an important historical detail that calls into question this interpretation. France in fact did have the “military wherewithal” to fight the Germans. The Maginot line had 860,000 soldiers manning it––nearly six times the number of Germans on the unfinished “Western Wall” of defensive fortifications facing the French—and another 400,000 troops elsewhere in France. Any move east by the French would have presented Germany with a two-front war it was not prepared to fight. Nor would Czechoslovakia have been an easy foe for Hitler. As Churchill wrote in The Gathering Storm, the Czechs had “a million and a half men armed behind the strongest fortress line in Europe [in the mountainous Sudetenland on Germany’s eastern border] and equipped by a highly organized and powerful industrial machine,” including the Skoda works, “the second most important arsenal in Central Europe.” Finally, the web of military agreements among England, France, Poland, and the Soviet Union was dependent on England backing France, which would not fight otherwise, and without the French, the Poles and the Soviets would not fight either. Had England lived up to its commitment to France, Hitler would have faced a two-front war against the overwhelming combined military superiority of the Allies. And he would have lost.

The lessons of Munich, and its value as a historical analogy, have nothing to do with a material calculation. Rather, the capitulation of the British and the French illustrates the perennial truth that conflict is about morale. On that point Stephens is correct when he writes that Chamberlain and Daladier did not have “public support,” and he emphasizes the role of morale in foreign policy. A people who have lost the confidence in the goodness of their way of life will not be saved by the material superiority of arms or money. And, as Munich also shows, that failure of nerve will not be mitigated by diplomatic negotiations. Talking to an enemy bent on aggression will only buy him time for achieving his aims. Thus Munich exposes the fallacy of diplomatic engagement that periodically has compromised Western foreign policy. Rather than a means of avoiding the unavoidable brutal costs of conflict, diplomatic words often create the illusion of action, while in reality avoiding the necessary military deeds. For diplomacy to work, the enemy must believe that his opponent will use punishing force to back up the agreement.

This truth gives force to the Munich analogy when applied to diplomacy with Iran. Hitler correctly judged that what he called the “little worms” of Munich, France and England, would not use such force, and were only looking for a politically palatable way to avoid a war. Similarly today, the mullahs in Iran are confident that America will not use force to stop the nuclear weapons program. Iran’s leaders are shrewd enough to understand that the Obama administration needs a diplomatic fig leaf to hide its capitulation to their nuclear ambitions, given his doubts about the rightness of America’s global dominance, and the war-weariness evident among the American people.  [........]

The weakening faith in American goodness that afflicts millions of Americans, and the use of diplomacy to camouflage that failure of nerve and provide political cover for the leaders charged with protecting our security and interests, are a reprise of England and France’s sacrifice of Czechoslovakia in 1938. That similarity and the lessons it can teach about the dangers of the collapse of national morale and the risky reliance on words rather than deeds are what continue to make Munich a useful historical analogy.

Read the rest - The lessons of Munich

 

British vs. non-British English

by 1389AD ( 47 Comments › )
Filed under Humor, Open thread, UK at January 15th, 2014 - 8:00 pm

Obviously this is NOT true of all British English speakers! For example, English-speaking Serbs in the British Isles will tell it like it is, in no uncertain terms, whether you want to hear it or not! :lol:

Study claims to show corelation between owning guns and being racist

by Rodan ( 13 Comments › )
Filed under Australia, Second Amendment, Special Report, UK at November 8th, 2013 - 12:42 am

No offense to any Australian or British person, but what the hell do some obscure researchers in Australian and Britain know about why people own guns in America. They claim to have done a study showing the link between racism and gun ownership. In my opinion, this study is nothing but Marxist propaganda.

Racism and guns go together.

That’s the finding of an international study released Thursday that says the two are linked. More specifically, odds are greater that a racist white American also keeps a gun at home and opposes gun control regulations.

The conclusion wasn’t too surprising for researchers at Australia’s Monash University and Britain’s Manchester University, which sought to better understand American gun culture.

“There had already been research showing that … blacks are more likely to be shot, so we thought there must be something happening between the concept of being black and some whites wanting guns,” Monash researcher Kerry O’Brien said in an email to the Daily News.

He also found that political leanings and geography play a part into firearm ownership.

I can agree with findings that link ideology and gun ownership, but the claim that there is a racist motive behind gun ownership is pure BS. This study will now be used by Progressives to paint any opposition to gun controls racist. This is getting old and I am tired of this divisive bullcrap.
Gun ownership is a Civil Right for all Americans and it is Progressives who want to keep minorities unarmed. Gun Control was originally designed to prevent non WHites from owning guns. If anything Gun control is racist!

British MP decries ‘unlimited’ Jewish funds as destroying Mideast peace

by Speranza ( 15 Comments › )
Filed under Anti-semitism, Germany, Headlines, Israel, UK at October 28th, 2013 - 10:04 am

He forgot to mention Jewish control of the media. /

Former British Foreign Secretary Jack Straw said during a debate in the British parliament that “unlimited” funds available to Jewish organizations and AIPAC in the US are used to control American policy in the Middle East.The comments reportedly were made last week during the Round Table Global Diplomatic Forum in the British House of Commons.Former Israeli Knesset Member Einat Wilf was in attendance at the debate and posted Straw’s comments on her Facebook page.Straw said, according to Wilf, that the greatest obstacles to peace between Israel and the Palestinians and her Arab neighbors are the “unlimited” funds available to Jewish organizations and AIPAC in the US, as well as Germany’s “obsession” with defending Israel.
“I guess he neglected to mention Jewish control of the media…,” Wilf added on her Facebook status.

Straw announced Friday that he would step down as a member of Parliament from the Labor Party at the upcoming 2015 general election. He has served in Parliament continuously since 1979. Straw served as both Home Secretary and Foreign Secretary under Prime Minister Tony Blair, and as Secretary of State of Justice under Prime Minister Gordon Brown.