Monday, March 23, 2009

The (near) Mass Atrocity in Haifa

1. On Saturday night, in what looks indistinguishable from divine
intervention, a massive car bomb placed next to a large Haifa mall by
terrorists failed to explode. Had it gone off, experts are saying, it
might have collapsed the entire mall on the large numbers of shoppers
inside (many of whom were Arabs!). This mall was hit by one of Saddam
Hussein's SCUD rockets in the first Gulf War, but no one was hurt because
it was still under construction. My children shop there all the time.
The detonator of the car bomb exploded, made noise, but failed to ignite
the main charge.

Haaretz is citing a nameless "Palestinian source" claiming that Hizbollah
was behind it. I do not believe Haaretz. I think Haaretz is trying to
prettify the involvement of Palestinians and Israeli Arabs in this.

I think Israeli Arabs were behind it and their timing was to "protest" the
scheduled march today of Kahanists in an Arab Israeli town. In their
view, Jews should be denied access to Arab areas of Israel. Jihadi Arabs
can march on Israeli campuses but Kahanists must not be allowed to set
foot in Arab towns, even if one is a Knesset member.

If indeed the Hamas or PLO turn out to be involved, we will have more
proof of the folly of Israel's agreeing to a ceasefire in Gaza, rather
than launching a campaign of assassinating 20 terrorists a day until Gilad
Shalit is released.

If indeed it turns out that the Hizbollah was behind it, as Haaretz
claims, then for all intents and purposes Ehud Barak and Ehud Olmert
placed the bomb there. Barak, because he unilaterally capitulated and
turned southern Lebanon over to the Hizbollah in 2000. Olmert and Barak
because they failed to attack the Hizbollah other than with pointless air
raids on empty buildings in the summer of 2006, while the Hizbollah fired
4000 rockets at Israel, and because they have not responded at all to
recent new rocket attacks on Israel by the Hizbollah.

2. Thought control at Tel Aviv University is not New:
Tel Aviv University and the PC Assault on Israel
by Steven Plaut
(segment from larger discussion in

The more important arena of PC battle has been the radical feminist
agenda, and in particular the introduction of affirmative action quotas
for women. Until recently, moderate feminism seemed to be making quite a
bit of progress in Israel. An equal opportunity law had been passed, and
any woman unfairly denied a job or promotion could sue. Women had long
been entering lots of non-traditional fields, and my business
administration classes seem to have a small feminine majority. 53% of
college students in Israel are women. Women participate at high rates in
the labor force, and indeed are encouraged to do so by receiving pension
benefits that are in effect twice those of men. Every university has
established "Women's Studies", and - as abroad - these sometimes produce
serious scholarship, but often produce anti-academic "advocacy
scholarship". Battered women's shelters have multiplied and family
violence prevention has been receiving a sympathetic hearing throughout
most of society.

While women may be "under-represented" in the Knesset, in the country that
produced a Golda Meir, no one can contend that the obstacles to women in
politics are insurmountable. But Israeli feminism is undergoing change,
and - like in the feminist movements abroad - the moderate activism for
equality and justice is being crowded out by gynocentric radicals, Leftist
extremists, and fanatic quota-warriors battling against heterogeneity.
Just as the United States is preparing to do away - at long last - with
all reverse discrimination quotas, Israel has been preparing to establish
them across the board. A few months after the Rabin government took power,
the first quota law was passed, requiring that on the Boards of Directors
of public-sector corporations (a large chunk of the economy), women alone
must be appointed until a 40% representation for women is reached. This,
supposedly, was to "compensate" women as a group for past discrimination
in such appointments.

A survey of women directors by the periodical Net-Plus later found that
the bulk of these women did not believe there exists any sex
discrimination at all in the appointment of directors, and in any case,
the large majority of Israeli women directors strongly oppose affirmative
action quotas. That law lay dormant for over a year, until the government
sought to appoint three new directors to the Ports Authority and the Haifa
Refineries, all men. At that point the Israel Women's Caucus, the main
militant feminist group, stepped in. The Caucus was set up by feminist
Professor Alice Shalvi, but contains a strong contingent of anti-Israel
members of the Israeli Communist Party (Hadash), and many of the Caucus'
leaders had been active with Women in Black, one of the most ferocious
groups of Israel-bashers and pro-terror Palestinian romanticizers.

The Caucus' lawyers filed a petition with the Supreme Court demanding that
the appointments be overturned. The Caucus was unable to prove, and was
never even asked to try to prove, that the relatively small number of
women directors on the boards of these agencies had anything whatsoever to
do with discrimination. The Caucus reps were also unable to show that any
women had ever been unfairly passed over in these or any other
directorship appointments. Moreover, the Caucus was unable to prove -
indeed was never asked to show - that there existed a single woman
candidate anywhere in Israel whose qualifications were similar or even
remotely approached those of the three gentlemen candidates. Finally, no
one alleged - let alone proved - that the three male candidates that were
to be punished and disqualified had ever in their lives discriminated
against any living organism.

The Supreme Court judges split two-to-one in favor of the petition by the
Women's Caucus. The dissenting judge (Kedmi) objected that the ruling in
effect corrected injustice through committing more injustice and would
deny the three male candidates their rights, including due process. The
majority opinion was written by Supreme Court Justice Eliahu Matsa, who
included a long-winded rendition of his own sociological and economic view
of the world, pontificating about the operations of labor markets and the
role of discrimination (Israelis are now breathlessly awaiting to hear his
views on quantum physics and neurosurgery in future Supreme Court
rulings). Emboldened by this "victory", the Women's Caucus and their
fellow-travelers have since been promoting an idea to set aside 40% of all
Knesset seats for women, a proposal greeted with ridicule almost
everywhere outside of Meretz. Naomi Blumenthal, a Knesset member from the
Likud, later proposed reserving a quarter of all public parking places in
Israel for women.

The periodic proposals for gender quotas in Israel have fascinating
implications. For example, since school-teachers are predominantly women,
such quotas would mean that all hiring of women teachers would be halted
until the proportion of male teachers reached 40%. But since there are few
qualified men seeking such jobs, the unqualified would have to be
recruited. Thus, achieving a sexual "balance" in the schools would mean
completely destroying the quality of teaching there. And not just in the
public schools. It turns out that in medical schools (all Israeli
universities are public-sector), the portion of women among Jewish
students studying for their MD degrees is about two thirds. If paramedical
academic professions (not MD's) are included, the men all but disappear.
So to "socially engineer" the profession and boost the portion of men to
the 40% minimum, Israeli medicine would have to be gutted as well and
under-qualified men turned into MDs. The list could, of course, go on and

The feminists regard any deviation from a 50% representation of each sex
in any profession to be proof of "discrimination". It is, in fact, nothing
more than proof of heterogeneity. But that is precisely what the radical
feminists are out to fight. Radical feminists are not the least interested
in equality; they only want homogeneity. The feminists in Israel have come
up with precisely zero evidence to prove that the under-representation of
Israeli women in corporate boards of directors, in engineering, certain
public sector jobs, university professorships, or in politics has anything
whatsoever to do with discrimination. They do have everything to do with

If deviation from 50% sexual representation is "unnatural" in all things,
then what are we to make of the gross over-representation of men in
Israeli prisons? Is this evidence of discrimination by judges against
Israeli men? As in other countries, the Israeli radical feminists like to
"prove" that discrimination exists by bandying about statistics showing
that women on average earn only X% of the salary of men. When asked to
prove that this "gap" derives from discrimination, the feminists get angry
and shrill and read off the numbers a second time, louder. The same
"proof" could be used to demonstrate that, in the United States, there
exists abominable discrimination against Christians and against
non-Asians, or that all Moslem countries (including Iran) discriminate
intolerably against Moslems.

PC intolerance for heterodox opinion is uniting with the gyno-quota
affirmative action movement. In November, 1994, I was invited to
participate in a panel discussion on the subject of affirmative action
held at Tel Aviv University, sponsored by the Department of Policy
Studies. Attendance at the afternoon seminar was mandatory for students in
the department. I presumed that the discussion was to be high-level and
academic, and that my role - as the only economist participating - would
be to present the viewpoint of economics, which is quite hostile to
affirmative action. The panel was the initiative and was charged by
Prof. Ze'ev Segel, better known for serving as the leftist legal affairs
columnist for Haaretz.

Upon arrival, I quickly realized that the "debate" was to consist of over
two hours of one-sided indoctrination. The panel consisted of eight
academics and radical feminists, every single one of whom considered
affirmative action quotas the best thing since sliced bread. Absolutely no
mention was made of anything that might be negative about reverse
discrimination quotas - no damages from lowered standards, no stigmatizing
of the "beneficiaries" of affirmative action, no injustice in
discriminating against members of unfavored groups, no arbitrariness in
the choice of affirmative action beneficiary groups, no mention of
backlash and bigotry being fanned. Indeed, evidence was stretched (to be
diplomatic) to make the "correct" case. One speaker quoted at length from
US surveys showing that whites are strongly opposed to affirmative action,
apparently trying to prove that racism was behind any criticism thereof.
No mention was made of the fact that the same polls often show the
majority of blacks and Hispanics also strongly opposed to affirmative

At the end of the two-hour harangue, I was introduced by the chairman - in
a way indicating I was there to provide nothing more than comic relief -
and told that I could have up to three minutes to present the other side
of the affirmative action debate. There were shouts from the audience that
the level of the discussion would be lowered by allowing me to speak. I
politely told the audience that the ground rules of the debate did not
appeal to me and so I was relinquishing my three minutes, and then walked
out, followed by a dozen students who demanded to shake my hand. The main
victims of PC intolerance and censorship have always been college students
who are denied the right to hear both sides of political issues. That PC
suppression of dissent and debate should occur at Tel Aviv University was

3. From
The president of Tel Aviv University, Prof. Zvi Galil, has just issued
this apologia in defense of the one-sided communist indoctrination
conference to be held at Tel Aviv University this week. We have left the
English and spelling uncorrected. Here is the original message:
from Prof. Zvi Galil <>
date: 22 March 2009 02:38
It is a conference on the history of the Comunist (sic) party in Israel.
Go to the poster and see Anita shapira is a speaker.
Go read her books.
It is a legitimate conference on a legitimate topic..
Whoever wrote it tries to hirt [sic] Tel Aviv University and Israel.
Tel Aviv University professors just won SIX Israel Prizes.

(the fact that the president of Tel Aviv university writes English like
this is amazing)

4. Another Israeli "academic" for jihad:

5. The Israel Prize goes to another Israel Hating Professor:

6. How Israeli leftist Academic behaved during the recent war:

7. Melanie Phillips takes on Haaretz, the Palestinian newspaper printed
in Hebrew:

Melanie Phillips

The Ha'aretz Blood Libel


On his eponymous BBC TV show this morning, I listened open-mouthed as
Marr invited Tory foreign affairs spokesman William Hague to express his
about the

pretty appalling looking reports coming out of Israel where members of the
Israeli Defence Force who were involved in the Gaza operation have talked
effectively being told to shoot at civilians.

Hague replied:

Well those are absolutely appalling stories. There is no question about
that. We don't yet know the truth of them. I think it's very important to
that. This is evidence that now has to be looked at, of course, by
military investigations unit; and it is a good thing that Israel does have
provision for that, for investigating these things and for bringing to
book any
who were responsible for behaving in such a way. But we will expect. I
across the world, we will expect Israel to deal decisively with anybody
committed such crimes. It will be very important for Israel to do that if
it is
to keep any moral authority in these situations in the future. So we're
appalled by that and we hope that it will be dealt with.

Of course Hague was careful to say the truth of this evidence was not yet
But there is no evidence. So far, there is simply nothing to prove or
from these reports of the soldiers.. discussion carried in Ha..aretz last
week, here and here -- just innuendo, rumour and hearsay, demonstrably
(read the
second account) wrenched out of context and refracted through the patent
prejudice of the soldiers.. instructor Danny Zamir, an ultra-leftist who
previously been jailed for refusing to guard settlers at a religious
and who said of the soldiers who spoke at the meeting in question that
reflected an atmosphere inside the army of ..contempt for, and
against, the Palestinians...

So what are these

pretty appalling looking reports


absolutely appalling stories?

There are precisely two charges of gratuitous killing of Palestinian
under allegedly explicit orders to do so. One is what even Ha..aretz made
was an accidental killing, when two women misunderstood the evacuation
route the
Israeli soldiers had given them and walked into a sniper..s gunsights as a
result. Moreover, the soldier who said this has subsequently admitted he
didn..t see this incident .. he wasn..t even in Gaza at the time .. and
merely reported rumour and hearsay.

The second charge is based on a supposedly real incident in which, when an
elderly woman came close to an IDF unit, an officer ordered that they
shoot her
because she was approaching the line and might have been a suicide bomber.
soldier relating this story did not say whether or not the woman in this
actually was shot. Indeed, since he says ..from the description of what
happened.. it would appear this was merely hearsay once again. And his
interpretation was disputed by another soldier who said:

She wasn't supposed to be there, because there were announcements and
there were
bombings. Logic says she shouldn't be there. The way you describe it, as
in cold blood, that isn't right.

So two non-atrocity atrocities, then. What else?

Soldiers mouthing off -- in conversations of near-impenetrable incoherence
that instructions to kill everyone who remained in buildings designated as
terrorist targets after the IDF had warned everyone inside to get out
to instructions to murder in cold blood. There cannot be an army in the
which would not issue precisely such instructions in such circumstances,
Hamas had boasted it had booby-trapped the entire area.

Gloating graffiti left in the houses of presumed terrorists.

Tasteless T-shirts emblazoned with motifs crowing about killing, condemned
immediately by the IDF.

Rabbis distributing to soldiers psalms and religious opinions about the

That..s it. Not one single verifiable actual incident of intentional
killing of
civilians. No evidence whatever of any such rogue incidents -- let alone
order by the IDF to tear up its actual rules of engagement which forbade
deliberate targeting of civilians. Talk by one soldier about the IAF
killed a lot of people before the soldiers went in contradicted by another

They dropped leaflets over Gaza and would sometimes fire a missile from a
helicopter into the corner of some house, just to shake up the house a bit
everyone inside would flee. These things worked. The families came out,
really people [i.e., soldiers] did enter houses that were pretty empty, at
of innocent civilians. [my emphasis]

Funny sort of unethical military behaviour, that goes to some lengths to
houses of civilians before storming them. Indeed, the soldiers..
contains more such material totally contradicting the impression of gross
violations of ethics. Such as this:

..I am a platoon sergeant in an operations company of the Paratroops
Brigade. We were in a house and discovered a family inside that wasn't
to be there. We assembled them all in the basement, posted two guards at
times and made sure they didn't make any trouble. Gradually, the emotional
distance between us broke down - we had cigarettes with them, we drank
with them, we talked about the meaning of life and the fighting in Gaza.
very many conversations the owner of the house, a man of 70-plus, was
it's good we are in Gaza and it's good that the IDF is doing what it is

The next day we sent the owner of the house and his son, a man of 40 or
for questioning. The day after that, we received an answer: We found out
both are political activists in Hamas. That was a little annoying - that
tell you how fine it is that you're here and good for you and
and then you find out that they were lying to your face the whole time.

What annoyed me was that in the end, after we understood that the members
of this family weren't exactly our good friends and they pretty much
deserved to
be forcibly ejected from there, my platoon commander suggested that when
we left
the house, we should clean up all the stuff, pick up and collect all the
in bags, sweep and wash the floor, fold up the blankets we used, make a
pile of
the mattresses and put them back on the beds.

... ..There was one day when a Katyusha, a Grad, landed in Be'er Sheva and
a mother and her baby were moderately to seriously injured. They were
of one of my soldiers. We heard the whole story on the radio, and he
didn't take
it lightly - that his neighbors were seriously hurt. So the guy was a bit
and you can understand him. To tell a person like that, 'Come on, let's
wash the
floor of the house of a political activist in Hamas, who has just fired a
Katyusha at your neighbors that has amputated one of their legs.. - this
easy to do, especially if you don't agree with it at all. When my platoon
commander said, 'Okay, tell everyone to fold up blankets and pile up
mattresses,.. it wasn't easy for me to take. There was lot of shouting. In
end I was convinced and realized it really was the right thing to do.
Today I
appreciate and even admire him, the platoon commander, for what happened
In the end I don't think that
any army, the Syrian army, the Afghani army, would wash the floor of its
enemy..s houses, and it certainly wouldn't fold blankets and put them back
the closets...

This is what instructor Danny Zamir described as

..contempt for, and forcefulness against, the Palestinians...

No mention of any of that in the world..s media, is there? Do you think
Marr or William Hague read those bits? Do me the proverbial. All
picked up and run with is the lazy and malicious boilerplate carefully
spun by
Ha..aretz: rumour and hearsay about two incidents related by two soldiers
of whom wasn..t even in Gaza) -- one an accidental killing, the other
maybe not
a killing at all -- plus some wild mouthing-off by soldiers, some
graffiti, ditto T-shirts, plus some leaflets by unidentified rabbis making
statements that carry no weight with the IDF or reflect Israeli policy

On that basis, however, it..s proof positive for the likes of Andrew Marr,
William Hague, the New York Times, Guardian, Independent, BBC and Uncle
Israelbasher and all, that yes!! Israel is now shown (unless specifically
disproved -- and how do you disprove something for which no evidence is
whatever?) to have been committing atrocities after all in Gaza; and so
has now
forfeit what remains of its moral authority, which was already hanging by
thread as a result of all the previous blood libels, and almost certainly
right to exist at all.

This is not just bigotry. It is medieval witch-hunt territory. And it..s

<< Home

This page is powered by Blogger. Isn't yours?