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A nasty Echo from the past

A nasty Echo from the past

In the Tweed and Byron Shires there are a lot of Greens. They are everywhere. They are like blowflies at a Barcaldine barbeque. They even have their own newspaper, the Echo. It is the only openly politically aligned newspaper around. While one can respect their industry they show all the hallmarks of their party, including a marked intellectual cowardice. Like most Greens, they are right wing, to the point of reactionary, masquerading as progressives. They campaign against everything. Every now and then their campaigns spill over into something very ugly indeed.

Recently the paper published an openly antisemitic letter , just in time for the annual Byron Blues Fest. The usual grubby and odious muck. Here's an extract:

"No question of debating the issues, just a tirade of abuse and slander against those who feel strongly enough to take a stand for the human rights of the Palestinian people.

"This is the usual Zionist propaganda onslaught which sets out to crush and silence all opposition both within Israel and the shrinking West Bank and elsewhere in the world.

"The problem is not one of anti-Semitism but one of aggressive, nationalistic, expansionist Zionism. You do not have to be Jewish to be a Zionist. President Woodrow Wilson, a devout Presbyterian, was also a self-professed Zionist, so too is US Vice President Joe Biden. Zionists wrote the Balfour document."

I let it pass. As you do. You would go mad if you tried to respond to this hateful filth every time it pops up.

Not content with that, on 26 May, the paper decided to put on display its "non-anti-Semitic but anti- Zionist" credentials by publishing this choice little editorial titbit. I reproduce it in full.

"An Australian delegation will join the international Freedom Flotilla 2, which will set sail next month to break the blockade of Gaza and end Israel’s illegal collective punishment of the people of Gaza. The Australian contingent includes Sylvia Hale, former Greens member of the NSW Parliament, Vivienne Porzsolt of Jews Against the Occupation, Alex Whisson of Australians for Palestine, and youth worker Michael Coleman. The boats will carry humanitarian aid and medical supplies. Our experience with the pro-Israel lobby suggests that the delegation will be accused of anti-semitism, along with Backburner for reporting it."

Excuse me while I vomit.

So I wrote them a letter. Here it is.

Dear editor,

Your nasty little sneer about the "pro-Israel lobby", and your complaint about "accusations of antisemitism", pretty much sum up the main reason why your party, the Greens, has no place in mainstream Australian politics.

You complain about your "experience with the pro-Israel lobby". Given that you have never published anything that could be remotely described as "pro-Israel", it can only be that you never publish opinions that differ from yours or the "experience" you claim is very limited indeed. None at all. What is your problem? "They" can't be bothered with you? Who do you mean by this "lobby" anyway? Israel is solidly supported by every major political party in our country. As you would expect from a liberal democracy for the only liberal democracy in the Middle East and the only state there that provides and guarantees full political and civil rights for Arabs. Only some of your party's candidates and some of "One Nation"'s attack Israel so obsessively.Why? If by the "pro-Israel lobby", you mean Australian Jews, then say so. We need to know. About you. Not them.

Your complaint about allegations of antisemitism is absurd. I don't believe you. Some years ago I issued a challenge on Margo Kingston's Webdiary site, that would be famous in part of your paper's core market. Webdiary, I mean. The challenge was to produce a single example of someone serious, seriously suggesting that criticism of Israeli policy, or government, was of itself antisemitism. No takers. A few attempts but no cigars. Not one. It's been over five years now.

The opposite is the truth. It is impossible to defend Israel, and the democratic secular Zionist principles that underpin it, without being accused of racism. Sooner or later it always happens. Always. It is also true that much of the incessant attacks on Israel, especially from the political extremes, and from militant Islamism, is driven by antisemitism. This cannot be honestly denied. It is everywhere.

I said then how ubiquitous your whiny complaint was. "Anybody who criticises Israel risks being labelled an antisemite". Rubbish. A lie. Produce an example. Just one will do. This lie was intended to intimidate or pre-empt those who seek to defend Israel especially against its harshest critics. Nothing has changed.

The situation in Gaza can be summed up in a sentence. Israel has the stark choice of either attempting a military blockade or simply allowing Hamas to become as lethally armed as Hezbollah. Gaza is an Iranian colony ruled by a subsidiary of the Muslim Brotherhood. Their grievance with Israel has nothing at all to do with "occupation". Gaza is not "occupied". Their grievance has everything to do with the fact that Israel is free, liberal and democratic and, above all, with the fact that Israel is the Jewish state. They say so again and again.

Nor do I accept that for you this is about the "Palestinians". The old hard left that now control your party in this state does not give a rat's arse about the Palestinians. They never have and they have been around for a long time. If they gave a damn at all they would be hollering from the rooftops for the liberation of these tragic people from the death grip of Hamas. For them, this is not about the Palestinians at all. Even less is it about the millions of people from Tunisia to Syria and beyond right now risking their lives in a desperate brave struggle for some of those freedoms that Israeli Arabs enjoy as of right and have for decades. For the old hard left, this is about something else entirely.

It is an outrage that your party sought to impose BDS sanctions on Israel, as part of a global campaign aimed at the destruction of the Jewish state, almost as soon as it took effective control of a Sydney council. I can think of no clearer example of abuse of elected office at local government level. I will be publicly asking Greens candidates, especially any standing for re-election in the Tweed Shire, precisely what her position on BDS is. I will do this in an open detailed letter that I will copy you and other local press. If the Greens want this argument then I for one will be happy to oblige.

Geoff Pahoff

So what happened? You guessed it. They declined to publish it. No surprise there. They never do. Their commitment to "debating the issues" does not extend to actually publishing anything they disagree with.

Fine by me. As far as I know I am the only "aggressive, nationalistic, expansionist Zionist propagandist" in the Tweed Shire. There are hundreds of them. And their candidates will be hearing from me, via the non Greens controlled local media, just as soon as the next council elections are on the horizon. Bring it on.


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Point of no return

That blog I just linked deserves a thread of its own.

Point of no return.

In just 50 years, almost a million Jews, whose communities stretch back up to 3,000 years, have been 'ethnically cleansed' from 10 Arab countries. These refugees outnumber the Palestinian refugees two to one, but their narrative has all but been ignored. Unlike Palestinian refugees, they fled not war, but systematic persecution. Seen in this light, Israel, which absorbed most of these Jewish refugees, is the legitimate expression of the self-determination of an oppressed indigenous, Middle Eastern people.


This website is dedicated to preserving the memory of the near-extinct Jewish communities, which can never return to what they once were. It will attempt to pass on the stories of the Jewish refugees and their current struggle for recognition and restitution. Awareness of the injustice done to these Jews can only advance the cause of peace and reconciliation.

Flash!!! UN condemns Israel!!

Less than 48 hours ago the UN Human Rights Council met. As with its predecessor chaired at one time by Libya  there was really only one agenda item. The condemnation of Israel for human rights violations. Iran, Venezuela, Bahrain and Syria lined up to denounce these in detail and in the strongest and gravest terms.

But they got a surprise.

Johnny the Pil

Dammit, Paul. If you want to catch a fish you must  remember to put a hook in the bait. No Link! I would have thought that was obvious. But I forgot to allow for the fact you're a leftie and as such probably an astonishly liberal fisherman. I had to go and find it myself. What's your problem? It's not illegal you know to hang around ICH. A bit grubby perhaps. But nothing necessarily to be ashamed of. Now I know what you're talking about.

I just had to go and see this thing about a US ban on poor widdle Pilger. I know I shouldn't have but there you go.

Glad I did actually because the story is quite entertaining. 

Seems Johnny Jihad was scheduled to present his latest widely acclaimed film at its US premiere in Sante Fe for right about now actually. Sponsored by this worthy foundation

Hmm. Well I've never heard of it but I noticed its upcoming events include Tariq Ali and Norman Finkelstein so I assume John felt at home.

Anyway the story is Johnny was ready to go to present his film to the vast US intellectual and material markets ... had his bags packed  and all ...  and what happens? Yep. Pulled the rug. One short email and that was that.   No come Charlie. They even cancelled the flight tickets.

Don't you hate it when they do that?

And sure enough if you go to their current events link under Readings and Conversations.  There he is. Scroll down. Right down the bottom. There you are ... Scheduled for Wednesday 15 June 2011 with David Barsamian is none other than our native born son, John Pilger. They even have a little photo. With a big red "THIS EVENT HAS BEEN CANCELLED" sticker across it.

I couldn't find the actual time the cancelled event had been scheduled. Allowing for time difference ...

Now that's what I call a disinvitation. They cancelled the tickets for chrissake ..

Now hold it in. It gets funnier. Seriously. It does. This is seriously funny. Right up there with Caz's email about planking.

What happens next? Well Johnny Jihad is inflamed of course. They always are but I mean especially inflamed. And rightly so!  I mean they cancelled the bloody tickets. So not just ordinary especially inflamed. Real white hot especially inflammed. He has written an open letter to Noam Chomsky!.  

He has... truly  ... the 2009 Sydney Peace Prize winner has written to Noam Chomsky himself, the 2011 winner,  to . "alert you to the extraordinary banning of my film on war and media, 'The War You Don't See' "

OK. Now you can laugh. And laugh.. God I love the left. ....That is just so so funny....

Still ... I'm sure John knows what he's doing. Afterall this is Noam Chomsky himself he's called in. If Noam can't get him those tickets no one can.


You don't like Noam Chomsky?

Methinks we have an anti semite troll at these threads.

I'm selective?

Excuse me? I don't like Chomsky because he is the godfather of moral equivalence and a scrawny little git.

Nothing to do with the fact he's a Jew. Or me for that matter. To attach special significance to an anti-Zionist writer because he is a Jew while discounting the views of a pro-Zionist writer because he is a Jew has to be a pretty good early warning litmus test for antisemitism.

If there is nothing wrong, why are they censoring?

Strange this banning of Pilger from launching his new film in America, according to Znet; various other Indies- not local mass media who have "sat" on it like a shamed kid sitting on its pooped pants.

Hadn't thought of the Lobby being behind it, till I copped a grousing from a rightie at another blog, since Arizona is a home for much rightwing thinking from anglo reactionaries, but you start to wonder. 

What are they scared of?

Actually, I rather like Pilger.

Someone finally smart enough or not idiot enough not, to tell the difference between "anti zionism" and "anti semitism".


Paul, as it  happened I did take that bait you threw on Pilger. Fiona, I think, blocked it. Just as well.

Thanks Fiona. He nearly caught me.


Geoff, why are you running a campaign on behalf of developers who want to destroy a location, and by using this novel "anti semitism"

Its original, but you forgot I didn't come down in the last rain cloud.

Paul taking an unseemly interest in other people's property

I'm delighted you raised the subject of real estate, Paul,  because it opens the door to a discussion about JNF owned land in Syria and Lebanon and in East Jerusalem. This is land lawfully bought at full market value from the legal owners by one of the largest and most venerable Jewish charities.

... How many people know that the JNF lays claim to 73,974 dunams in southern Syria (Jewish Property Claims against Arab Countries, by Michael Fischbach p36)? The earliest purchase was made in the 1880s when it was under Ottoman rule. Surely they should have been demanding compensation from the Syrian government? ...

The same in Lebanon: 4,000 dunams. Originally purchased by the Palestine Israel Colonisation Association (PICA) and later transferred to the JNF.

..There is an extremely tangled web of Jewish ownership in Arab areas. There are hundreds of thousands of Arab squatters in 'Arab east Jerusalem' who live on land still owned by the Jewish National Fund. The JNF purchased hundreds of individual parcels of land in and around Jerusalem during the 1920s, 1930s and 1940s. Some ended up under Jordanian control. In 1948, on one of these parcels the UN built the Kalandia refugee camp, seizing the land without permission from the owners, the JNF.


Antisemitism is when they hate Jews. Anti-Zionism is when you hate Jews.

"Max Brenner You Can't Hide! You Support Genocide"

This filth is spreading.

Now the old hard left / Islamist alliance is  targetting what they perceive to be a Jewish controlled chocolate shop in Parramatta.

Given that the "Palestinian" population has increased about seven fold since 1948 you'd reckon that they would at least have the grace to concede that the Jews are pretty inefficient at genocide.

Bullying Jewish shopkeepers

These people are obscene. I will be at their next Brisbane rally. Let's see them try to intimidate me.


Geoff, I would like to see these idiots try and sit in my son-in-laws's coffee shop and do their singing.

We would hose them out into the street like the garbage they are.

What are they going to boycott, most of them look as though they need a job first to get some money to buy things.

Green and Brown vomit

Geoff, it was very interesting to see the result of the local election this weekend in Waverley (Nth.Bondi Ward), for the first time The Greens lost votes (4%) because of their BDS sanctions.

Just let Barmy Bob and his fruitcakes have their heads and it will cost them seats at the next Federal election, especially when Lee Rihannon starts to shoot her mouth off.

Political oblivion beckons

I'm glad to hear this Alan. It seems the Greens have finally overstretched themselves. They have reached their high water mark and now it's a long and steady decline. I doubt that it has been understood up until now just how much of an extremist Rihannon is.

"I'm shvitzing like a pig"

Lucky Charlie, er, Carlos Estévez didn't refer to Chaim Levine as being Jewish, who knows what he might have been accused of?

But the ADL seems to think that referring to somebody by their real (Jewish) name is borderline anti-semitic.

The world of homo-sapiens is a funny old world.

You mean like Maurice?

You mean like, "Maurice Newman", Justin?

Tut, tut, musn't challenge the implicit transgression ... no disclosures around here, we might find out where someof them are really coming from, as with Austentayshus (Dovid  Regev, eh, Gutman) last night.

No left; no challenge to the US Zionist axis and bloody West Asia with its drones, ghettoes, cluster bombs and incessant stream of traumantised refugees, with censorship even here topprevent the truth getting at, as people as varied as PaulMcGeough, Assange and Brad Manning have discovered.

Just so that the likes of Halliburton and Goldman Sachs can reap another fast $billion, in concert with Netanyahu's real estate sharks and speculators in Tel Aviv and Jerusalem - that's all!

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