How BDS bigots, deceivers and smear merchants corner the market in hate

IF you believe in fairies, Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions campaigners – who I’ll call BDS-ards for space reasons – are kindly folk, if a tad economical with truth, who only seek a better world…better still without that pesky state of Israel.

What a travesty it is, they claim, that uppity Jews – six million of them – boss the Middle East, an oasis of fellowship, where 400,000,000 amiable Arabs merely want to go about their daily business of annihilating each other.

And what are these ‘land-grabbers’ doing there at all, demand the BDS-ards. Huh! It’s as if the Jews think they’ve some 3,500-year-old right to Israel, not poor Arabs, who’ve identified themselves as Palestinians for…er, well maybe a century, give or take a decade.

So forget historical fact, including the glaring one that no country called Palestine ever existed.

And perish the thought BDS-ards think there’s anything amiss with China brutalising Tibet, Turkey – with more journalists jailed than anywhere else – persecuting Kurds and ‘annexing’ Northern Cyprus, Russia turning Chechnya into an abattoir or Saudi Arabia, Iran and North Korea believing human rights are just for the wimpy West.

Similarly, the gang of mass murderers blighting much of Africa are of no consequence.

Because in the warped, BDS mindset all the world’s ills lie at the doorstep of Israel, uniquely the world’s only Jewish – if secular – state and rated by internationally respected Freedom House as the Middle East’s only free one.

The point is, despite swapping land for peace with Egypt and Jordan, the confounded Israelis just won’t cave in to all Palestinian demands – PLO warlord-cum-compulsive kleptomaniac, Yasser Arafat, was even offered 96% of what he sought for a nation-state, yet still flatly rejected it.

Israel also has the audacity to insist on the same rights as 57 countries that are Islamic and be recognised as Jewish.

HEROIC GIG: Sir Paul McCartney defied death threats to perform in Tel Aviv

HEROIC GIG: Sir Paul McCartney defied death threats to perform in Tel Aviv

That’s a definite no-no, rail the BDS-ards, who contend – for all its Western democracy, respect for gays, equal rights for women and people of other faiths, especially its 1.3-million Muslims – Israel is an ‘apartheid regime’, ruthlessly occupying the West Bank, coincidentally the cradle of terrorism.

Israel even built a protective wall rounds itself, dramatically curbing terror attacks by 80%, and has the nerve to retaliate against suicide bombers and fusillades of rockets fired by Gaza’s cuddly do-gooders, Hamas.

So, indulging in a repugnant equivalence to the Holocaust, not a few BDS-ards compare Israel’s legitimate right to self-defence with ‘Nazism’, disingenuously obscuring the issue their own tactics smack of totalitarian thuggery.

Founded in 2005, BDS was inspired by Qatari-born bigot Omar Barghouti – bizarrely a student at Tel Aviv University – to delegitimise and destroy Israel via an international trade and cultural boycott.

BDS-ards say their model is the one that helped topple white, supremacist South Africa, though Nelson Mandela, who knew a thing or two about real apartheid, distanced himself from their ravings.

Meanwhile, BDS stoops to sophistry in a claim that it merely seeks to end Israeli ‘occupation and colonisation of all Arab lands’ and a ‘right of return’ for Palestinians.

What they’re coy about admitting is this includes today’s four million descendants of the 700,000 Arabs displaced in the 1948 Israel War of Independence, when five, invading Arab armies failed to crush the re-born, UN-sanctioned  Jewish state.

Note the ‘all’, because the ploy is to dump on Israel a multitude of Arabs, weaned on a diet of vicious anti-Semitism, that BDS-ards hope will deliver a new Muslim state, entirely Jew-free – ‘Judenrein’, as Hitler termed it – even if a bloodbath is guaranteed.

In its pursuit of this ghoulish vision, BDS never lets truth spoil its PR war, especially with a pliant Western media – lead by those bastions of journalistic objectivity, The Guardian, New York Times and BBC – to give lies legs

Naturally, there’s a fetid stench of far-Left odium about BDS-ards, who subscribe to free speech, only if it chimes with their preposterous ‘group think’.

OXFAM DUMPED: Actress Scarlett Johansson quit the charity in a storm over her role as the 'face' of SodaStream

OXFAM DUMPED: Actress Scarlett Johansson quit the charity in a storm over her role as the ‘face’ of SodaStream

Its key battlegrounds are academia, big biz and showbiz, where it has achieved some traction, though not without embarrassments, the latest being a kick in the bias of Oxfam by its former goodwill ambassador, actress Scarlett Johansson.

When the charity upbraided her for promoting SodaStream, a fizzy drinks gizmo made in a factory just over the contentious, pre-1967 Six Day War ‘Green Line’,  the Hollywood A-lister summarily dumped it, saying she supported ‘economic co-operation and social interaction between a democratic Israel and Palestine’ (which, by implication, Oxfam doesn’t).

Worse, Oxfam was told to shove off by SodaStream’s 700 Palestinian workers, who enjoy identical rights to Israeli staff and are paid four times the West Bank average.

Still BDS remains the toast of certain showbiz luminaries, like the preciously PC Emma Thompson, who ganged up with like-minded luvvies to pen an anguished letter to The Guardian – where else! – demanding an Israel theatrical troupe be banned from appearing at London’s Globe Theatre.

Another is ex-Pink Floyd strummer, Roger Waters, whose hysterical animus towards Israel is claimed by critics to hide motives far more insidious as he tries to harass pop stars into nixing appearances in the Jewish state.

Despite such coercion, icons such as Sir Elton John, Rihanna, Madonna, Lady Gaga and Alicia Keys continue to play Israel; Sir Paul McCartney did so, too, bravely defying death threats, reportedly from BDS-ards; and The Rolling Stones are due in Tel Avis this June.

On the financial front, several European banks have been pressed into severing links with Israel for ‘ethical reasons’, notably Denmark’s Danske Bank (otherwise known as the bank that liked to say ‘Yes’ to backing North Korean sales of ballistic missiles to Iran, according to a US State Department report revealed by Wikileaks).

In academia, the tiny, Left-leaning American Studies Association recently added its voice to BDS, only to find itself boycotted by over a hundred, top US universities.

But BDS-ards claimed a major scalp when they persuaded Professor Sir Stephen Hawking, lauded as Britain’s most brilliant physicist, to renege on an invitation to visit Israel…despite the hi-tech wonders powering his awesome, life-enhancing wheelchair being Israeli innovations

The stark truth is BDS is shot full of such hypocrisy and bigotry and – let’s face it – not a few who hide their repellent anti-Semitism under the pretence of Palestinian solidarity.

The authoritative Economist magazine branded the movement ‘flimsy’ and ineffective, pointing out that ‘blaming Israel alone for the impasse…will continue to strike many outsiders as unfair.’

And not even the Palestinian leadership supports the boycott.

Sane folk would also imagine art, wealth-creation and ground-breaking technology should transcended all boundaries, their bounties shared by people everywhere. But, where only Israel is concerned, that’s heresy in the skewered opinion of BDS-ards.

And the people they target – from showbiz stars to businesses and academics – are no more responsible for the Israel-Palestinian imbroglio than they are for the slump in Mongolian yurt sales.

So let there be no mistaking the real message of BDS: Make hate, kill hope.

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Kerry discovers peace deal is no deal for Abbas’s Palestinian ‘mafia’

COULD it be I’ve heard the first cuckoo of spring – or, more accurately, a cuckoo that’s changed its chirp to that of a wise, old owl?

Because, in a rare break from its traditional Israel-bashing and Palestinian tub-thumping, that bastion of liberal smugness, The New York Times, has acknowledged the ugly, flip side of its pet cause.

Temporarily shedding its prejudices, the self-style ‘newspaper of record’ reported how the Palestinian Authority (PA) plumbs the depth of incitement and peddles a diet of incessant, hate-bilge to its people, despite hollow promises to desist.

Jodi Rudoren, the snooty ‘Grey Lady’s’ Jerusalem bureau chief, revealed how Hitler is revered in West Bank schools and kids on TV vilify Jews as ‘barbaric monkeys’ and ‘murderers of Muhammad’ (that’s a new one on me, since the Prophet died in Jew-free Medina in 632 AD).

The report finally noted how PA maps obliterate Israel, a compelling clincher that the Arabs will never countenance a two-state solution, which they’re thrice tried – and abysmally failed – to solve by war in 1948, 1967 and 1973, and vicious blood-letting ever since.

Actually, the story’s so old, it could have grown bushy, white whiskers.

Yet, somehow, it has eluded other NY Times scribes, probing Guardian newshounds and all the BBC’s Mid-East hacks put together. In their defence, maybe they’ve been too obsessed with rubbishing Israel, they simply didn’t notice.

But Rudoren’s ‘discovery’ is bad news for rag-tag, Lefty apologists for Palestinian terror, many of whom cloak their anti-Semitism in chic anti-Zionism, amid the fervent wish democratic Israel is destroyed and replaced by what will inevitably become yet another Islamo-fascist tyranny.

APPRENTICE & SORCERER: A glum Mahmoud Abbas with a portrait of his predecessor as PA leader, the 'inventive' Yasser Arafat

ONE-STATE SOLUTION: Mahmoud Abbas, the PA boss ( with a portrait of his predecessor, the ‘inventive’ Yasser Arafat) won’t tolerate a Jewish state as next-door  neighbour

For years these witless dupes have bought into howling porkies, mostly invented by Yasser Arafat, delegitimising the viper’s nest of a region’s only egalitarian state, where people of 100 nationalities and a swathe of faiths are free to practice their credos, sexual orientations and traditions without fear of persecution.

In contrast, just try being a Christian or gay in Egypt, Iraq, Pakistan, Gaza or Saudi Arabia – even if the PA’s propaganda machine has ‘rebranded’ Jesus a Palestinian. The facts that no country called Palestine ever existed and Christianity’s Messiah was incontrovertibly Jewish are conveniently airbrushed from history.

Truth, though, has never been an obstacle to Arab lie-mongers. But their latest claim is the most outlandish yet: Jews don’t deserve a reprised homeland, because they were never there in the first place!

Who says so? None other than those shambolic back-stabbers, the Arab League, who’ve shamelessly exploited the hapless Palestinians for decades and are united only when it comes to opposing any suggestion that Jewish sovereignty in the region has legitimacy.

Which is why the United Nations Educational Scientific and Cultural Organization, UNESCO, pulled an exhibit entitled: ‘People, Book, Land – The 3,500 Year Relationship of the Jewish People and the Land of Israel.

Due to open at the UN agency’s Paris HQ last Monday, it was cancelled after a zero-hour protest by the motley bunch of heinous nasties, who rule 350 million subjects with iron fists.

So forget Moses, Isaac, Joshua, Noah and other biblical patriarchs. Presumably, they didn’t exist or, like Jesus, were really Palestinians. And ditto the ancient, Jewish kingdoms of Judea and Israel, much mentioned in both Old and New Testaments.

Even the Nazis didn’t dream up such gobsmacking deceit.

More insidious still, the veto is blessed by the Obama Administration, even though the Americans were originally sponsors of the UNESCO event.

The flimsy reason? The so-called ‘peace process’ was ‘at a sensitive juncture’, claimed a spokesperson.

The real reason: once-mighty America is led by a wimpish, addled appeaser, who’s allowed Iran, Kremlin-backed Syria, the fanatical Muslim Brotherhood and Hizbollah crazies to turn the powder-keg Middle East into the world’s premier killing field.

EAR TO THE GROUND: Secretary of State Kerry knows what the real stumbling block is in his attempts to forge peace

EAR TO THE GROUND: Secretary of State Kerry knows what the real stumbling block is in his attempts to forge peace

So what chance an Israel-PA settlement, a desire shared by most sane folk, especially the majority of Israelis?

As John Kerry has discovered, pigs will fly first.

The US Secretary of State knows Israel has done land-for-peace deals before – with Jordan and Egypt – and will do again if conditions are fair. But not so Mahmoud Abbas, head of the PA’s ruling cabal-cum-self-serving mafia.

For all his pretence of Western-style governance, Abbas is way passed his rule-by date, having fobbed off elections since his four-yearly term in office expired in 2009.

Nor can he speak for the Islamic headbangers of Hamas, who usurped his quasi-democratic credentials in Gaza, murdered PA aparatchiks and stay wedded to a dogma that seeks the destruction of Israel and Jews everywhere.

So Kerry, latest bearer of the poisoned chalice of peace-seeker, now realises the stumbling block isn’t territory, borders, refugees or security, but the PA’s scary hate-world, where no state is better than two, if it means accommodating a Jewish one.

And, secular though their country is, Israelis are no more inclined to disavow their right to the most ancient of biblical faiths than the planet’s 57 Muslim-majority nations will renounce Islam or the Vatican cease to be Catholic.

Palestinian suffering, then, will continue unabted, so long as they have venal, inept, kleptocratic leaders, who line their own pockets with their people’s blood money – mainly donated by America, the EU and Britain – and peddle unremitting hatred.

Meanwhile, having been duped by nuclear-potty Iran, even gullible Obama is beginning to wonder what’s going on, as every initiative he promotes – such as this week’s farce in Geneva, designed to stem the Syrian bloodbath – disintegrates into chaos.

In a telling interview last week, the President admitted the chances of attaining peace anywhere in the Middle East were ‘no better than 50-50.’

‘We may be able to push the boulder partway up the hill and maybe stabilize it so it doesn’t roll back on us,’ claimed Obama optimistically.

‘I believe that the region is going through rapid and inexorable change. Some of it is demographics; some of it is technology; some of it is economics. And the old order, the old equilibrium, is no longer tenable. The question then becomes: what’s next?’

Answers on a postcard to B.H. Obama, 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue, Washington, DC.

All ideas welcome.

Monster pay-offs, mismanagement and lies…is this the BBC laid bare?

Bet you thought BBC – known to Brits sentimentally as ‘Auntie’ – was an acronym for British Broadcasting Corporation. Well might it have been until last Monday, when it transmogrified into Backstabbing, Bitching and Cantankerousness in a frenzy, all performed in the best, possible taste, of course.

Before the probing House of Commons Public Accounts Committee (PAC), old Auntie’s knickers became so twisted, the principal antagonists appeared to be verbally trying to throttle each other with the elastic – a blustering Lord Patten, chair of the BBC Trust, in one corner, festering in the other, ex-Director General, Mark Thompson, now boss of The New York Times.

Played out live on BBC Parliament, it made unedifying viewing – an acrimonious, real-life, corporate bare-knuckle fight laid bare. And, though a chill aplomb was somehow retained, the sparring was far nastier than any ruckus that’s kicked off down EastEnder’s Queen Vic, BBC viewers’ favourite soap pub.

The nub of the issue was: who knew what about a £1M-plus golden goodbye to one-time Deputy DG, Mark Byford, which, based on the current Euro=£ exchange rate, is probably enough to buy Greece.

Thompson accused Patten of misleading Parliament over the pay-off, but the last governor of Hong Kong – remembered by the Chinese as ‘Fatty Pang’ – denied the charge, insisting it was before his time as chatelaine of Auntie’s mansion.

LORD ONLY KNOWS: Patten denied knowledge of the £1M pay-off to Byford

LORD ONLY KNOWS: Patten denied knowledge of the £1M pay-off to Byford

The problem for both combatants, however, was that this left yet another fetid odour overlaying the stench of iffy severance largesse doled out to Corporation managers, like £700,000 – plus £55,000 she wasn’t entitled to – to Jana Bennett, director of TV and ‘Vision’, who once ordered a £100 bouquet for Jonathan Ross, as he mulled a humongous, £18M, chat-show contract Byford practically begged him to autograph.

All is endemic of a culture of outrageous palm-greasing that’s infected the Beeb, as it seeks to shed an overload of managers, many with no links to programming.

But the Patten-Thompson spat descended into such a pea-soup fog of colliding egos, alleged memory lapses and conflicting versions of the truth, the committee’s robust chairman, Margaret Hodge, intervened and said emphatically, ‘I’m not having any more lies this afternoon.’

Just for good measure, she added, ‘At the best I think what we have seen is incompetence, a lack of central control, a failure to communicate. At its worse we may have seen people covering their backs by being less than open.’

Ouch! This wasn’t a schoolma’am admonishing a couple of errant fifth formers for telling porkies about who broke a window in the gym. It was two of the most august presences in the history of British broadcasting sitting before her, each adamantly insisting on the righteousness of their take on how the UK’s chief purveyor of entertainment runs its business (or, conversely, frittered away a sizeable chunk of its annual £3.7bn in public funds, a.k.a. the Licence Fee).

As Lord Michael Grade, himself a former Chairman, said on BBC2 Newnight later that evening, ‘The BBC doesn’t understand the value of money’.

ACCUSER: Ex-Director General Mark Thompson accused Patten of misleading Parliament

ACCUSER: Ex-Director General Mark Thompson accused Patten of misleading Parliament

Sometimes I’m unfairly accused of being anti-Auntie, but I’m not. It is still the platinum standard broadcasters, worldwide, aspire to and its output – on TV, radio or online – is extraordinary.

In fact, its flair for serving up riveting drama, documentary and cultural shows was never better illustrated than by last week’s delights… Simon Schama’s The History of the Jews, gritty, tear-jerky Midwives and the Last Night of the Proms, all veritable televisual feasts.

No, my gripes with the behemoth Beeb are: it’s too rich and powerful for the public good; its current affairs coverage is skewered by an overweening Left-liberal bias (try getting a newsroom job if you haven’t worked for The Guardian); and its venal officer class inhabits a parallel universe no responsible company’s shareholders would tolerate if they uncovered such gross incompetence and nefarious abuse of funds.

Meanwhile, the BBC Trust, specifically under His Haughtiness, Patten, cannot simultaneously be Auntie’s cheerleader and regulator, because that’s a contradiction of roles.

It is clearly unfit for purpose and should be ditched, with the BBC placed under the protection of Ofcom, which regulates Britain’s other, state-run broadcaster, Channel 4.

The excrement hit the fan when the Jimmy Savile paedophile scandal exposed other dark, recesses within an organisation purporting to be the nation’s moral arbiter, but where mutual feather-bedding became the norm

For an insight into this we are beholden to Lucy Adams, the BBC’s outgoing head of HR, whose defence of grotesque pay-offs was: it’s ‘custom and practice.’

ENOUGH'S ENOUGH: 'No more lies', demanded Committe chairmn, Margaret Hodge MP

ENOUGH’S ENOUGH: ‘No more lies’, demanded Committe chairman, Margaret Hodge MP

Apart from in the murky domain of banking piracy, it is patently not and certainly isn’t replicated in other public service sectors, because never forget that’s exactly what Auntie is.

Ms Adams’ crass ignorance of the real world is, I suppose, understandable from someone paid £420K p.a. – more than twice the salary of another public servant, the Prime Minister – to run the Beeb’s personnel department, where Dinah Rose QC found evidence of bullying and ‘a strong undercurrent of fear’.

Therefore, it was unsurprising, too, that Ms Adams appeared to have suffered a ‘memory lapse’, because she told MPs a memo she claimed at an earlier PAC hearing never to have seen might have actually be drafted by her.

Ouch (again)!

But, after the tsunami of revelations about Beeb management’s magnanimity to each other, how much more evidence is required before it’s decided enough is enough?

As the London Daily Telegraph noted, ‘On perks, salaries and bonuses, too, the BBC hierarchy appeared to operate according to its own rules, with members of the privileged club rewarding each other with incomes commensurate with their egos rather than their talents.’

So where does that leave Patten, already savaged over his handling of the Savile case, the Digital Media Initiative fiasco – in which the Corporation wrote off £100M – and bizarre choice of pondering George Entwistle as DG, who vacated his office after just 54 days with £475,000 in his back pocket?

Anywhere else, such cackhandedness would require Patten’s head on a platter.

But Auntie’s no ordinary organisation. Unlike Caesar’s wife, it always considered itself above suspicion…until now.

A siren voice in the Middle East madness signals a glimmer of hope and sanity

Incredible as it may seem at this critical juncture, could I have detected a tiny glimmer of hope amid the chaos and lunacy of the carnage-strewn Middle East?

Not that Shiite and Sunni, Palestinian and Israeli, Arab and Jew are all suddenly going to embrace each other warmly, cooing ‘Salaam’ and ‘Shalom’. On the contrary: tragically, there’s no denying much more blood will be spilt before the pipe dream of peace comes true, if ever fully.

No, the script will continue apace, after disparate anti-Assad fighters forged an iffy alliance in Doha early this month, the fragmented opposition agreeing to combine under the Soviet-sounding nom de guerre of The National Coalition Forces of the Syrian Revolution. With Al Qaeda extremist and raving Salafists in its ranks, skeptics aren’t betting it’ll enjoy a long life.

In the meantime – having already overflowed into Turkey and Jordan, where thousands of Syrian refugees have fled their odious regime’s killing machine – the conflict is engulfing Lebanon, where Iranian-backed proxies of the terrorist franchise, Hizbollah, hold the country by its throat.

Israel has done its best to stay above the fray, despite Syrian army tank rounds, mortar shells and stray bullets landing in its territory. But now they, too, have been shanghaied into taking defensive action on their southern flank.

With nearly 800 rocket attacks targeted at its civilians so far this year up to the beginning of November from Hamas’s terror enclave in Gaza – missiles smuggled in from Libya, Iran and Sudan and seriously lethal ordnance – it’s small wonder Israel felt compelled to take out the terror-monger-in-chief, Ahmed Jaabari, on Wednesday.

READY TO FIRE: Hamas terrorists prepare another rocket fussilade to further provoke Israel

But what did Hamas expect by deliberately provoking an Israeli defensive retaliation with a rocket blitz?

As usual, they escalated the violence for PR gain, but the real reason is they want to test the new-found power of their sponsors and armourers, the fundamentalist Muslim Brotherhood, who swept to control after Egypt’s overthrow of the Mubarak mob.

Meanwhile, in the West Bank, the Palestine Authority’s inept boss and arch foe of Hamas, Mahmoud Abbas, is ignoring all sage advice by preparing a second bid for fig-leaf statehood at the UN, knowing it will kybosh any hopes of reigniting talks with Jerusalem.

Chuck into the mix maniacal Iran’s obsession with developing a nuclear weapon that will guarantee them bully-boy status over the Middle East if only they can only annihilate Israel – in your dreams, Ahmadinejad – and the perfect storm continues to foment.

So the status quo is worsened and – unlike their creative, medieval predecessors – today’s Arabs can appear guilty of seeming unable to organise a fondu party in a funfair, so factionalised and fractious are they over ancient tribal and religious enmities among themselves.

Hence, with an Arab Spring now turned Islamic Winter, where’s this glimmer of hope I mentioned? So, consider the following carefully:-

The Arab world wasted hundreds of billions of dollars and lost tens of thousands of innocent lives fighting Israel, which they considered is their sworn enemy, an enemy whose existence they never recognized.

‘The Arab world has many enemies and Israel should have been at the bottom of the list.

‘The real enemies of the Arab world are corruption, lack of good education, lack of good health care, lack of freedom, lack of respect for the human lives and finally, the Arab world had many dictators who used the Arab-Israeli conflict to suppress their own people.

‘These dictators’ atrocities against their own people are far worse than all the full-scale Arab-Israeli wars.’

These aren’t my words, though I fully endorse the sentiments. No, they emanate from Abdulateef Al-Mulhim, who goes on to state tellingly, ‘If many of the Arab states are in such disarray, we should contrast them with Israel.

‘It now has the most advanced research facilities, top universities and infrastructure. Many Arabs don’t know that the life expectancy of Palestinians living in Israel is far greater than in many Arab states and they enjoy far greater political and social freedom than many of their Arab brothers.

‘Even the Palestinians living under Israeli occupation in the West Bank enjoy more political and social rights than in some parts of the Arab world.’

VOICE OF REASON: Saudi journalist Abdulateef Al-Mulhim

So who is this Abdulateef Al-Mulhim and is his a siren voice of reason in the Arab wilderness, where hatred is common currency and unyielding Islamo-fascists are increasingly calling the shots?

Strangely, he is a retired commodore of the Saudi navy, now a columnist in Arab News, the oil-rich desert kingdom’s first English-language newspaper.

Given the implacably Sunni Muslim House of Saud isn’t a renowned advocate of a free Press or human rights, it is bizarre Al-Mulhim was permitted to express such heretical opinions. So they must have passed muster with a censor high up the Saudi bling chain.

Al-Mulhim’s comments – and their obvious official sanction – represent a glimmer of blue-sky thinking by the ultra-conservative Saudi establishment. And it’s a sign, too, they are getting a tad hotter under their kaffiyehs about what’s long been brewing on the Iranian Shiite side of the Persian Gulf.

As small acorns become imposing oaks, many Middle East watchers are intrigued by what they perceive may be an ever-so-slight thaw between the Saudis and the Israelis, since Al-Mulhim has called into doubt the one, abiding distraction uniting Arabs: eradicating Israel.

The three wars they instigated against the Jewish state – in 1948, 1967 and 1973 – all resulted in ignominious loss, along with large tranches of territory that Israel negotiated back to Egypt and Jordan in exchange for ‘cold’ peace deals.

Abbas, however, hasn’t shown he’s serious about such accommodations, much to the satisfaction of his glee club of purblind, Left-liberal luvvies, whose credo is echoed daily by the anti-Zionist cheerleaders at The Guardian, BBC and New York Times.

The luvvies, of course, will continue to pretend that Israel is still the nub of all Middle East woes and 250 million Arabs will make love, not war when those five million stubborn Jews disappear in a second Holocaust and the Palestinians reclaim a ‘homeland’ that was never their birthright in the first place.

Al-Mulhim has shot that proposition down in flames, as if to say ‘It’s not Israel, stupid’; that’s just been a convenient sideshow, camouflaging the real problem of tyrants suppressing their people.

While I’m not naive enough to imagine such ideological foes as Saudi Arabia and Israel can kiss and make up, a chink of light has broken through the gloom, even if it is largely based on the premise that my enemy’s enemy is my friend.

It might never guarantee total peace, but if back-channel diplomacy can unite Saudi influence with Israeli can-do, it could put the brakes on an unfolding calamity exploding into an apocalypse.

 

Where The Guardian leads, the BBC is sure to follow

Whither next the BBC, some political and media pundits ask, while others – mainly motley, disgruntled members of Joe & Joanna Public, fed up with a diet of dog-tired repeats – may cavil and demand, ‘Why doesn’t the Beeb just wither?’

Rather like the National Health Service, Brits long retained a misty-eyed nostalgia for old Auntie, though – again like the NHS – they are fast realising it has become a misbegotten one, based on faith rather than reality.

The old tenets, as decreed by its founding father, Lord Reith, a man whose Scottish piety inspired a vision of broadcasting neutrality and integrity which formed the basis of the BBC Charter, have been whittled away and usurped by a self-serving, Left-liberal cabal.

So, while much of the BBC’s arts, magazine and drama output remain a tour de force, in the sphere of current affairs it sees itself as gatekeeper of the country’s political and moral conscience and, listing heavily to the radical as it does, it perpetuates an agenda that is arrogant, posturing and intensely self-serving.

To many this is not the role of a once-unique, public service broadcaster, propped up by an annual viewing tax (e.g. the Licence Fee) of billions, imposed on every telly-owning household in the land, even if its occupants limit their small screen entertainment to Sky News, ITV, Channel 4 or 5, The Shopping Channel or the countless other platforms that have mushroomed since the advent of the digital free-for-all.

Auntie has also become ultra-protectionist – almost neo-Stalinist – in its secrecy and sensitivity to criticism. For instance, The Balen Report of 2004, which investigated allegations of BBC bias in its Middle East coverage, was a blatant cover-up and never given a public airing. It caused the Corporation to spend hundreds of thousands (again of taxpayers moolah) fighting legal challenges to make it come clean.

It even took a recent Freedom of Information request from the online news site, The Commentator, to force the Beeb into disclosing which daily newspapers it bought. This revealed that, while the BBC procured between 40,000 and 50,000 copies of most of the day’s dailies, it bought 59,829 copies of the Guardian – a substantial proportion of the ailing paper’s print run.

The figure suggests that, while newsrooms automatically buy all the hard-copy media, employees order the Guardian for themselves.

As MEP Daniel Hannan points out, the bastion of the far-Left takes a number of assumptions as givens: i.e. police are racist, businesses are corrupt, Israel is a wrong, US Republicans are extreme, the welfare system is ungenerous, immigration is desirable, austerity and growth are contradictions.

However, readers have a choice of options which may reflect their personal prejudices and vote with their pockets when buying a newspaper. They have no such freedom of expression when it comes to watching – or switching off – the BBC. It’s pay up or be damned (and possibly face a prison sentence if you withhold your Licence Fee).

To hark back to my earlier reference of The Guardian’s influence in BBC newsrooms, one insider admitted this is no co-incidence. For not only does Auntie use this paper as a recruitment tool – thus ensuring it attracts only like-minded, Left-leaning thinkers – The Guardian’s editorial stance is often the one most popular with the Corporation’s news coverage decision-makers. And they tolerate no democratic counter-arguments.

As Hannan reported anecdotally when he tackled one editor on her failure to give airtime to that portion of the population – possibly a clear majority of Licence Fee payers – who think Britain would be better off outside the EU, she replied: ‘That’s their opinion, but we have to reflect the economic facts.’

‘She genuinely couldn’t see that hers was just as much an opinion as her viewers,’ he noted.

At sometime in the future – hardly likely under the tutelage of the next Director General, George Entwistle, a BBC apparatchik of long standing – the Beeb’s self-protectionism will be a busted flush and it will be forced to live in the real world, raising its own funds, minus the tax-payers’ crutch.

If and when it does, Auntie will only have herself to blame for lumbering viewers with Guardian-spun, pro-Left, anti-Establishment bias.

PS: It was hardly surprising the BBC’s outgoing DG, Mark Thompson, was quickly anointed boss of the New York Times, the self-styled ‘paper of record’, otherwise known as The Guardian of the USA.

Are Hizbollah terrorists? No, just a bunch of cuddly social workers, says the EU

It’s a well-known fact one person’s freedom fighter is another person’s terrorist. These conflicting views hinge on one determinant: Who they attack (if it’s someone else, they are simply dubbed ‘militants’; if it you, your country and its innocent populace, they’re branded ‘terrorists’).

Thus, unless you’re the BBC, The Guardian, The New York Times or any branch of the hand-wringing, Lefty-liberalism apologists union, such groups as Al-Qaeda and all its copycat franchises, the IRA (now in the guise of the Real or Continuity spinoffs), the Basque nationalists’ slaughter squad of ETA and Hamas were or are broadly regarded as ‘terrorists’ by most in the civilised world.

However, according to the latest dictum from the European Union, Hizbollah is merely a Shia Muslim political party in Lebanon, magnanimously community-spirited with an extensive social services network and, of course, the obligatory ‘self-defensive’ military wing, which can be a tad ‘militant’ on the odd occasion.

That it hijacked control of Lebanon at the point of an AK47 and deliberately provoked a war with Israel is of no consequence. Neither are the following Hizbollah acts:-

  • The 1983 US Embassy bombing in Beirut, which killed 63 people, including American government officials and eight senior CIA agents.
  • The 1983 Beiruit Barracks attacks in Beirut – the deadliest terrorist assault on a US target prior to 9/11 – which killed 241 Marines, sailors and soldiers and wounded over 100 others.
  • The 1985 hijacking of of TWA Flight 847
  • The 1994 bombing of the Jewish Community Centre in Buenos Aires, which killed 80 and injured over 300.
  • The indictment of Hizbollah leaders by a United Nations tribunal for the 2005 assassination of Lebanon’s democratically-elected Prime Minister, Rafik Hariri.
  • The attempted 2009 attack on Egyptian and Israeli targets, foiled by Egyptian security (with similar incidents in Thailand and elsewhere this year).
  • The murder of six people at a Bulgarian tourist resort airport two weeks ago by a Hizbollah-dispatched suicide bomber, at the behest of its puppet-masters in Teheran

ON THE MARCH: Hizbollah ‘social workers’ en route to doing good works

Let’s forget, too, Hizbollah deliberately provoked a war with Israel by murdering and kidnapping Israeli soldiers on Israel’s side of the border and that it a) Persecutes Christians and other minorities in Lebanon; b) Acts as Iran’s political and military proxy in the region; c) Has a stockpile of at least 40,000 high-tech rockets and a private army; and d) Props up Hamas – which is designated a ‘terrorist’ organisation by the UN – with funds and weaponry, again helpfully provided by their bloodthirsty brethren in Iran.

No, Hizbollah, according to the EU, is still just a cuddly, self-help mob, with the best possible intentions. And any fears that it will somehow gain control of Syria’s arsenal of nerve gases when the Assad tyranny is toppled are greatly exaggerated.

Meanwhile, that the US, Canada and Britain regarded it as a ‘terrorist’ group is merely an aberration on the part of hostile countries, who don’t really understand Hizbollah’s benign intentions.

‘There is no consensus for putting Hizbollah on the list of terrorist organisations,’ insisted Cypriot Foreign Minister Erato Kozakou-Marcoullis, whose country currently holds the rotating EU presidency.

Helpfully, he added with naïve understatement – just in case anyone was under some silly misapprehension – Hizbollah was ‘active in Lebanese politics.’

Clearly, EU foreign policy mirrors its purblind intransigence to fixing the Euro fiasco and one can only but wonder which part of Planet Zog the batty Eurocrats inhabit.

Is the ‘leaky’ image of Saint Julian of Wikileaks blown?

Update on ‘Saint’ Julian Assange, the liberal elite’s favourite fugitive, and his bid for political asylum in Ecuador, by hiding in that whiffy and genuine banana republic’s London embassy…

It appears that the Wikileaks founder and crusader for ‘free journalism’ isn’t too fazed about climbing into the political sack with Ecuador’s odious, tinpot dictator, Rafael Correa, who has a fiery passion for curbing Press zeal.

A bulletin from the Organisation of American States reports: ‘Correa regularly uses an emergency provision in the country’s broadcast law to commandeer the country’s airwaves and denounce journalists as ‘ignorant’ and ‘liars’.’

In fact, El Presidente makes media censorship a flagship government policy, evidenced by how he has filed multiple defamation suits against critical journalists. Three executives and the former op-ed editor of the country’s leading newspaper, El Universo, have been hit with a $40-million libel judgment and could soon be jailed.

Contrast this with Assange’s assertion: ‘We (Wikileaks) are free Press activists. It’s about giving people the information they need. That is the raw ingredient that is needed to make a just and civil society. Without that you are just sailing in the dark. I have tried to invent a system that solves the problem of censorship across the whole world.’

Then there was this bizarre exchange in a TV interview Assange did with Ecuador’s despot.

Correa: ‘Let us stop promoting this image of poor, courageous journalists, a saintly media trying to tell the truth, and tyrants and autocrats trying to stop them.’

Assange: ‘I completely agree with your view on the media.’

Hence, it’s impossible to deduce whether the pair will make strange bedfellows or swap pillow talk in a meeting of like minds.

ECUADOR’S CORREA: Anti-Press, tinpot dictator and Assange’s ‘guardian’

Meanwhile, support for the plight of the allegedly persecuted Saint Julian appears to be peeling away, like an overripe Ecuadorian banana (for the record: the country exports five million tons of the fruit a year).

David Leigh and Luke Harding, of The Guardian – the newspaper that first championed Assange and publicised the Wikileaks dossier – describe the revulsion of staff at the far Left broadsheet at his beliefs, after one of the journos asked Assange if wasn’t worried that Afghan civilians, who’d co-operated with the coalition forces, could be exposed to danger by Wikileaks’ revelations.

Assange’s chillingly replied, ‘So, if they get killed they’ve got it coming to them. They deserve it.’

The New York Times, another early Wikileaks glorifier, suffered a similar rush of hindsight, reporting that several of Assange’s closest associates had abandoned him, exhausted by their publicity-hungry leader’s ‘erratic and imperious behaviour, and nearly delusional grandeur’.

As the public mood shifts towards the realisation that a world in which nothing is secret would be stark, staring, dangerously bonkers, schisms are appearing in Assange’s fan club – ‘a motley collection of socialites, movie-makers and human rights bores,’ as the Daily Telegraph describes them – several of whom have acted as sureties for the £240,000 bail, which he has now jumped.

Jemima Khan, the cause-sensitive, multi-millionaire heiress, admits she’s ‘on the hook for £20,000’, but expects Assange will finally go quietly to Sweden, which seeks his extradition on rape charges, a request granted by an English court.

Maybe some of those who once naively bought into the saintly vision of Julian – and his quest to torpedo Western security on the high altar of ‘Press freedom’ – may now be beginning to wonder if they’ve not actually slipped on a very nasty banana skin…and an Ecuadorian one at that.