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Marilyn Shepherd reviews Paul McGeough's Kill Khalid

Thank you, Marilyn Shepherd, for this review.

Kill Khalid by Paul McGeough

McGeough is that rare journalist who takes no sides or prisoners of his own but his compassion and care for those who are traumatised and battered always shine through. I scarcely feel qualified to give any sort of review of his book Kill Khalid but as the book itself is a tour de force that should be read by any and all people who can find it in themselves to have an open mind and open heart I will give it a shot.

I grew up with the romantic notion that Israel was really the story of Exodus as written by Leon Uris; I grew up thinking the Jews were so hard done by they were right to take the empty land and make it their own. I had no idea how deluded that was until the massacre in Sabra and Shatila in 1982 laid bare to the world the brutality and vicious hatred of those Jews towards the Arabs they saw as the enemy. My journey into the region led me to the case of Akram Al Masri and other Palestinians in 2002 which led me to a greater understanding of the area and has had me reading the works of Norman Finkelstein – Beyond Chutzpah and The Holocaust Industry – which show that the Israelis are not the victims: they are the criminals in what Finkelstein calls the satanic state.

Ilan Pappe’s Ethnic Cleansing of Palestine is a brave, landmark book which McGeough clearly used to explain his book. Jimmy Carter laid bare the lies and infamy of Barak’s Camp David walkout and non-deal and Arafat’s corruption and sellout of the people he was supposed to protect. Others like Gershom Gorenberg and Akiva Eldar have written about the illegal settlements and the impact on the Palestinians, and a few Palestinians who were displaced in 1848 have written of their experiences.

Journalists like Amira Hass, Gideon Levy and Uri Avnery have written for many years about the cruel occupation and the plight of the Palestinians. We need to hear their voices.

It is those experiences that led to the birth of Khalid Mishal and his so-called terrorism. I say that because when I compare his life to the privilege of someone like Netanyahu and Peres I cannot call the man a terrorist.

Two protagonists: Israel which was built on lies, spin, terrorism and ethnic cleansing over many years and Palestine which was a nation of farmers, olive growers and ordinary human beings for 2000 years or so who were the victims of the ethnic cleansing. I state now that my grandfather was in Palestine in WW11 with the 2AIF and I grew up hearing of their hospitality, kindness and caring for their fellow man and frankly the cruel, racist brutality of the Zionist my grandfather encountered. He was injured by one such person and was defended by a Palestinian farmer, something these two men had in common.

Rather than repeat the reviews that have been written so far I would like to explain how I feel about Mishal and how I understand what made him.

At the age of 11 he and his family were forced out of the West Bank in the Six Day War and the illegal occupation of the land by Israelis. Like the refugees in 1948, these new refugees thought they could go home: the UN had said Israel could not keep the land. They were as wrong as the first refugees because the Israelis simply started building illegal outposts by calling them “military”, and once the world decided it was OK they turned them into what we see today. Rows and rows of red roofed Jews only homes connected by Jews only roads, all deliberately built to be fortress outposts spying on the Palestinians and making their lives a living hell in smaller and smaller spaces.

Mishal is just a couple of years younger than me: a teacher, a lad made homeless and left drifting without any real home since 1967. He graduated highly as a physics teacher in his land of exile, Kuwait, and became interested in getting his home back even if that meant violence. So he connected with the Muslim brotherhood and dreamed of his homeland until 1991 when Arafat backed the wrong horse in the attack on Kuwait and Kuwait expelled over 400,000 Palestinians.

In Jordan he was almost murdered by Netanyahu, a man who got his education in America and had every privilege in Israel on his return. A man who came to be the PM and decided to murder a man whom he had never met, who was not really very important in the scheme of Hamas and at the same time triggered an international crisis from Canada, to Jordan, the US, Israel and Palestine that lost him his job in the end.

I know that I am supposed to be appalled at the actions of Hamas but I cannot find myself in that place – I find myself in sympathy instead because I see that Israel is the real terrorist entity here and has been since the 19th century when Hertzl and a few others decided they wanted Palestine. I find that telling the Palestinians not to fight back against the oppression, imprisonment and ritual torture and torment is the same as telling the victim of a gang rape to smile nicely at her rapists and then thank them.

The first terrorist attack by Hamas was not launched until after Baruch Goldstein entered a mosque, while people prayed, and committed a massacre. That was answered with a suicide bomber.

I won’t go any further; I do though recommend this timely book and suggest that everyone read it from the view of an open mind instead of the closed Zionist spin.

Mishal has never raised a weapon himself: he lives in hiding, he has had Netanyahu try to kill him, has had Zionists drive him from his home, he has been exiled three times and has no real home.

Who am I, who are you, to judge this man as a terrorist when he is far more sinned against than sinner? To my mind Bibi is the terrorist and yet he has just been re-elected by the Israeli people who know he is a terrorist and just don’t care. Livni is a war criminal, Barak is a war criminal, Peres is a war criminal. The Israeli cabinet are all war criminals just elected by a criminal non-state while 6 million Palestinians have still lost their homes, their land, their lives and their hope.

My question is, “Who is the real terrorist here?”

This is a book I simply could not put down.

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Read all of the statistics


Have a read of all the stats, Alan, and then ponder the article by Koustoukis.   He could have written about Alice Walker and Code PInk women entering Gaza with gifts, or George Galloway and Viva Palestina being greeted with flowers and cheers.

Instead we get the nonsense in the Age today.

Koutsoukis's article is mischief writ large as a result of McGeough's book pointing out in graphic detail how many times Fatah have sold out the people of Palestine in general and Gaza in particular. In 2007 Israel, Fatah and the US combined with Dahlan's "troops" to kill as many Hamas people as possible and stage a coup against the elected Hamas government of Palestine.

They were defeated in one week but Fatah is still collaborating with Israel to starve 1.5 million Gazans.

What would you do? Fatah are the other half of the gang rapists that Gazans are supposed to smile at and say "thank you" when they have finished.

11,000 Palestinians are illegally held in Israeli jails.    Almost all of them are tortured, many are forced to collaborate with Israel against their own people and before the latest attack on Gaza it was Fatah operative's giving details of Hamas buildings and infrastructure to be demolished.

I would shoot them too.

Barking loons and corrupt politicians cheered as heros by Hamas.

Marilyn Shepherd: "He could have written about Alice Walker and Code PInk women entering Gaza with gifts, or George Galloway and Viva Palestina being greeted with flowers and cheers."

Well, of course George Galloway would be greeted as a hero by Hamas, as Galloway was a close personal friend and business associate of Uday Hussein, being heavily involved in corruptly diverting millions in UN 'Oil for Food' funds from starving Iraqi civilians (along with the criminal Australian Wheat Board amongst others) to prop up Saddam's regime.

This is extensively documented in records seized fro the Iraqi Oil Ministry after the overthrow of Saddam Hussein.

This is detailed in a handy little book on the proceedings of the Independent Inquiry Committee that looked into the Oil for Food Scandal, titled Good Intentions Corrupted: The Oil for Food Scandal and the threat to the UN by Jeffrey Meyer and Mark G Califano, published by Perseus Books.

The lift value of George's oil preferences from Saddam were well over $100 million.

And 'Code Pink' are actually on record saying that the United States has no right in being in Hawaii (an American state!), and that World War II was not a legal war because they had no business in Hawaii when the Japanese bombed Pearl Harbor!!

They're barking mad. And obviously hypocrites if they support Hamas.

Where do you get this rubbish from?

Marilyn: "11,000 Palestinians are illegally held in Israeli jails. Almost all of them are tortured."

Where do you get this rubbish from?,

"Before the latest attack on Gaza it was Fatah operatives giving details of Hamas buildings and infrastructure to be demolished."

You have got to be kidding. The Israeli army would have every single building pinpointed and targeted in their missile systems.

How about these then?

Here we go, Alan and Eliot, do some reading and get some facts. 

Alan, the reality is that 20% of Israel is not Jewish and never has been. They are the relatives of the people trapped behind the apartheid walls, so why are they strangers? You will particularly like the letter from the King of Jordan whom it is always claimed collaborated with Israel. It makes no sense when you read his letter to the US in 1947.

http://www.haaretz.com/hasen/spages/1059925.html - this exposes the detailed planning down to the murder of the young cops.




This shows the lie of Shalit


International law.

http://www.ennaharonline.com/en/international/455.html http://informationclearinghouse.info/article22108.htm

Collusion with Israel to commit mass murder.

Enough now, Alan?

Paul McGeough - all of Jordan was Palestine

Well, Marilyn, according to Paul McGeough, as quoted from the very book you are reviewing here (see above), all of Jordan was formerly Palestine less than 100 years ago. All of it.

Should Jordan hand itself back now to Hamas in Gaza?

Well gee Alan, I guess I made it up



Mubarak spoke about the exchange of prisoners. Sarkozy spoke with much pathos about the soldier “Jilad Shalit”, a French citizen who all French people want to be freed. Interesting. There are 11 thousand Palestinian prisoners in Israeli jails. How many of them also hold French citizenship? Sarkozy did not say. It doesn’t interest him. Even in this bunch of hypocrites, he strives for championship.


Alan you need to get out more.   The Israeli media and human rights groups is far superior to your blinkered little mind.

I have said here repeatedly that all my sources are Israeli.  Which part of that don't you get?


Israel is the occupying power of Palestine, not the other way around - and Fatah have been acting as stooges for Israel for decades.   Which part of that do you think is a lie?


Abbas even cheered at first when Israel started the bombing, imagine that.   He was cheering the blasting to bits of fellow Palestinians.

 Why don't you try and face reailty for a change instead of whining?  You sound like a snivelling little child.

Torture worse when done by one's "own people"?

Well, what must it be like to be tortured by one's "own people", Alan?  I guess that it would be just as bad as being tortured by Israeli specialists.  Or do you have some sort of insider knowledge that you would like to share with us?

Hamas tortures, murders own people - eye witnesses

Major article in today’s Herald by a colleague of Paul McGeough detailing the horrific daily brutality of Hamas torture and murder squads terrorizing Gaza:

"Human rights abuses are witnessed every day here. People have no freedom of association or right to assembly, no freedom of speech, or access to an independent justice system."

Have you the courage to read it, Marilyn?

UN High Commissioner for Human Rights now a Zionist, too!

Marilyn Shepherd: "Eliot do you ever read anything or simply rely on what the Zionists claim to be the truth."

So, we are now expected to believe that the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights, Navi Pillay herself, who clearly acknowledges the anti-Semitic misconduct at the Durban conference, is also part of the Zionist movement!!

There's no bounds to the scope of the cunning global Zionist conspiracy, is there?

Criticising Israel is not anti-semitism

Criticising Israel for blasting away Palestinians is not anti-semitism.

Who gives a rats arse if the people doing it are pink, purple, Jewish, Christian, Hogwarts or people from the discworld?

If the Jews of Israel don't want to be blamed they should stop doing it.The Conference is to combat racism. Jews murdering Arabs just because they are Arabs is not the point, they know they do it so why cry when they are told off?

Conference convener admits conference itself was racist

Marilyn Shepherd: "The Conference is to combat racism."

The conference convener herself, the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights, Navi Pillay, admits that it was the conference itself which was racist.

That has been pointed out to you.

A matter of information

Today's SMH (12-03-09):

Australian Jewish News pulls advertisements for a speaking tour by Israeli academic Professor Halper presumably because some Zionists in Sydney don't want alternative anti-Zionist Jewish views put forward. 

But it isn't working any more.  The liberal Jews are making a stand and doing what principled people around the world do when they can no longer tolerate kant, spin, propaganda and bullshit.  They speak out.



Anthony Nolan, the groups that have brought Professor Halper out to Australia namely Jews Against the Occupation, Coalition for Justice and Peace in Palestine, Independent Australian Jewish Voices would only be known by less than 1% of the Jewish population.

Antony Loewenstein and Vivienne Porzsolt make a good living out of criticising Israel. Antony Loewenstein promotes his books through the website Independent Australian Jewish Voices.

If you want to read about spin, propaganda and bullshit just read Pilger and Fisk.

And your point is, Alan?

It seems to me that your point is that minority positions don't deserve speaking space. 

Clearly the purpose of pulling the ads was to prevent the dissemination of information contrary to what are claimed to be majority views. But I'd like to have seen that tested before accepting that support for Zionism in Australia is a dominant position among Jews.

Freedom of speech is fundamental to democracy.  It allows for the contest of ideas.  When it is exercised rationally and follows civil rules then freedom of speech is the process by which people arrive at informed views.

Not allowing such speech puts you in the camp of the anti-democratic.

It also exposes the fragility of your political position because rather than allow competing views to be heard you would argue that because a viewpoint is a minority one and not representative of Jews views in Australia then it doesn't deserve to be heard at all. 

Are you kidding? 

Historically you are keeping poor company. 

Think about it.

Speaking out

Utterly unwarranted slurs

Paul Walter: "An utterly unwarranted slur, but still a favourite tactic employed monotonously by the Zionist lobby."

Just getting back to that line of defense, it puts me in mind of the line taken by the governments of Iran, Libya and others when they were getting the boot into the Jews at the Durban UN racism conference in 2001.

You might recall the walkout by Israel, the USA and others during the  conference in Durban after a series of anti-Semitic outbursts by Iranian, Libyan and other backward dicatorships, defended by them as "not really anti-Semitic" but just justifiable distate for Zionism.

I was pleased to hear the conference convenor, UN High Commissioner for Human Rights, Navi Pillay today on radio concede that, yes, the conference was actually racist itself:

"The original conference was marred by abusive or hurtful remarks against Israel, but in a small section of the NGO parallel forum. But it seems that those who have been hurt have continued this kind of fear that there will be a repetition of the anti-Semitic behaviour."

Really, when thugs like Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, Ghaddafi or the morons at Hamas and Hizbolla and their apologists spout the line they're "not really anti-Semitic" but just opposed to "Zionism", they no more fool people than when local street corner, garden variety Jew baiters try it.

I was heartened

That so-called Durban slur

Eliot do you ever read anything or simply rely on what the Zionists claim to be the truth. These are the only two mentions of Israel in the Durban conference at a time when Israel were murdering hundreds of Palestinians, stealing more and more land and denying them basic human rights.

Ariel Sharon and Ehud Barak had precipitated an uprising by entering the mosque in a pre-planned manner and then blamed the Palestinians. You simply don't have any sense of anything beside the Zionist agenda, do you, as you swallow the pap whole?

Africa and their woes were mentioned dozens of times in the same communiqué so what on earth do Jews whine about?

Fiona: Marilyn, if you won't include links to material that you are quoting, that material will not be published.

That slur


63. We are concerned about the plight of the Palestinian people under foreign occupation. We recognize the inalienable right of the Palestinian people to self-determination and to the establishment of an independent State and we recognize the right to security for all States in the region, including Israel, and call upon all States to support the peace process and bring it to an early conclusion;

64. We call for a just, comprehensive and lasting peace in the region in which all peoples shall co-exist and enjoy equality, justice and internationally recognized human rights, and security;

65. We recognize the right of refugees to return voluntarily to their homes and properties in dignity and safety, and urge all States to facilitate such return;


150. Calls upon States, in opposing all forms of racism, to recognize the need to counter anti-Semitism, anti-Arabism and Islamophobia world-wide, and urges all States to take effective measures to prevent the emergence of movements based on racism and discriminatory ideas concerning these communities;

151. As for the situation in the Middle East, calls for the end of violence and the swift resumption of negotiations, respect for international human rights and humanitarian law, respect for the principle of self-determination and the end of all suffering, thus allowing Israel and the Palestinians to resume the peace process, and to develop and prosper in security and freedom;

Now as this is pro-Jewish and pro-Arab and as it has been Australia and international law for 60 years what on earth are Jews whining about?

If we don't go to this conference what are we saying? That the world has to be only pro-Jew?

Give us all a break now.

Fiona: Thank you Marilyn.

Excellent article

Marilyn Shepherd: " I state now that my grandfather was in Palestine in WW11 with the 2AIF and I grew up hearing of their hospitality, kindness and caring for their fellow man and frankly the cruel, racist brutality of the Zionist my grandfather encountered. He was injured by one such person and was defended by a Palestinian farmer, something these two men had in common."

My half brother, Arthur "Jack" Menser also served in Palestine and had the same opinion of the people although to my knowledge he never mentioned Zionists.

Perhaps your grandfather may have known him - if my memory serves me correct, he was in the 2/1 re-enforcements to the Sixth Division and posted to Palestine for the re-forming of the group so messed up in Greece and Crete.

He was known as an expert prize fighter.

Strangely quiet

Ern, as a true Labor man the following should cause you some distress, but you are strangely quiet.

Australia's unemployment rate has hit 5.2% after the economy suffered the biggest monthly drop in full-time jobs since 1991.

The jobless rate is now the worst it has been in four years. It is heading towards 7%.

It obviously does not worry you and Marilyn as much as the plight of the terrorists Mishal and his fellow Palestinian suicide bombers.

Jet Jackson time, again

Y' know Eliot, I guess you really illustrate my point . If Christians, Muslims and all manner of other folk are capableof great bloodshed, why not then the Israelis?

As  Marilyn Shepherd argued,  the rose-coloured  Hollywood-ified Leon Uris version of history just does not stand up to closer scrutiny, any more than John Wayne's Hollywood Vietnam ended standing up to the test of time. Calley and My Lai ended the Audie Murphy dreamworld of post ww2 US cinema propaganda forever and its been downhill, ever since.

With Israel, Gaza was one nastiness too often and Sabra/Shatilla was just one of many previous ones. The same stage of discredit has been reached as with America in Southeast Asia in the early seventies, and the arrogance of Israel in just announcing yet more settlements on Arab land for another 80,000 merely magnifies the egregiousness.


Eliot, all sources are Israeli Jews, so how can I be totally against Israel?  You are just one such Zionist closed mind that I want to read the book and open their eyes.


Marilyn Shepherd, not by any stretch of the imagination can this be called a book review, it is just your own personal tirade against Israel.

Very little was mentioned about McGeough's book. However, we did get your personal view about the terrorists Mishal and Akram Al Masri and other Palestinians.

You say: "I won’t go any further; I do though recommend this timely book and suggest that everyone read it from the view of an open mind instead of the closed Zionist spin."

As opposed to your own biased view of the Middle East.

That's what it was Alan, did you read it?

Alan, I said that I am scarcely qualified to review someone like McGeough.

And I stated that this was my personal view.

Did you read it? I am still entitled to my view based on the works I have read which are all written by Jews.


Marilyn Shepherd, yes I did read it and it should not have carried the heading, "Marilyn Shepherd reviews Paul McGeough's Kill Khalid"

Yes you are entitled to your views based on what you read. However, if somebody writes something you don't agree with you come down on them like a ton of bricks.

No Alan

Unlike you I am simply not so biased I cannot see the truth.

not again...

Eliot, why must you and you allies, time and time again, misconstrue Marilyn Shepherd and others, including thoughtful Jewish people's, justifiable distaste for Zionism, as a distaste for Jews themselves? An utterly unwarranted slur, but still a favourite tactic employed monotonously by the Zionist lobby.

Her review is packed, almost exclusively, with Jewish sources. But these are compassionate thinkers, not murderous rednecks.

If you were to ask Marilyn about Australians she would say similar things.

She likely has no grudge against thinking Australians, but is in no way "anti- Australian", let alone "racist", because she deplores unthinking Hansonism, for example, or is perplexed by the nonsenses that comprise Hansonism.

'Justifiable distaste for Zionism' as flimsy euphemism

How about this from Marilyn's "review";

"I grew up thinking the Jews were so hard done by they were right to take the empty land and make it their own. I had no idea how deluded that was until the massacre in Sabra and Shatila in 1982 laid bare to the world the brutality and vicious hatred of those Jews towards the Arabs they saw as the enemy."

Are you kidding, Paul? You think that is just "justifiable distaste for Zionism"?

Just a point about the massacre at Sabra and Shatila in 1982. It was actually conducted by Lebanese militias.

Not a word from Marilyn about "the brutality and vicious hatred of those Lebanese Christains towards the Arabs they saw as the enemy."


It was organised by Ariel Sharon. From memory it caused such a stink  even in Israel, that Sharon himself was eventually the subject of legal action over it.

Do you ever actually read?

Eliot, I will not engage with you on my personal take on a book.

Pathetic effort

It's a pity there's no reference in your "review" to anything in Kill Khalid itself. Nothing.

Instead, we have yet another a extempore statement from Marilyn about her revulsion against all things Israeli (in particular) wrapped up in the usual thinly disguised attack on Jews (in general).

I'll read the book myself, thanks Marilyn. I'll tell you what's in it.

the ghost of Karadzic / do unto others

The essay hangs on the term "ethnic cleansing"  Shepherd employs at mid point to hold her review together.

On these terms the review becomes a coherent, seamless whole of a(nother) apparently sharp indictment on the US and Israel, who have selectively ignored or betrayed so much of what they claim to be their own moral and philosophical heritage and underpinnings on the alter of expediency.

The only thing I could add is that the events over several generations in Palestine do not indict merely Israel, the visible tip of a moral and ethical iceberg, but failure to live  to Western values in general right across our civilisation.

We have not been equal to our own aspirations. Palestine is also a paradigm for neocolonialism, the world over, btw and the Christ we claim as inspiration would surely turn is his grave at the antics of the last century.

When we realised that overt colonialism were wrong, we went thru a period of self praise, as we "decolonised", but neocolonial mercantile exploitation, enforced by military interference where and when required, revealed an ugly underbelly, no less a "heart of darkness" for the fact that we had handed over the guns to our surrogates to do our killing for us and thus enable the continuance of theft and exploitation on a grand scale.

We neglected and ruined the colonies and left them vulnerable to chaos and exploitation and the price is paid thru the suffferings of billions world wide.

In the wake of Gaza, we are all Karadzics.

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