Tuesday, February 02, 2010
Bambi the Zionist Agent
1. Calling all anti-Zionists! Protest this newest Zionist atrocity! Help fight against Bambi the Zionist Spy (from the Wall Street Journal)
How Bambi Met James Bond to Save Israel's 'Extinct' Deer
It Took Cloak-and-Dagger Effort to Return Creatures From Iran to Biblical Home
JERUSALEM—On Nov. 28, 1978, as Iran was hurtling toward Islamic revolution, zoologist Mike Van Grevenbroek landed at Tehran's Mehrabad Airport, coming from Tel Aviv, carrying a blow-dart gun disguised as a cane and secret orders from an Israeli general.
His mission: to capture four Persian fallow deer and deliver them to Israel before the shah's government collapsed.
A LIVING LEGACY
A look at animals mentioned in the Bible.
A group of fallow deer.
It marked the daring climax of a years-long cloak-and-dagger effort to reintroduce the animals of the Holy Scriptures of Judaism to Israel.
In December 2009, Israeli wildlife officials added another chapter to the endangered ruminant's unlikely comeback when they released four descendants of those original deer into the Jerusalem hills. The animals joined the nearly 500 fallow deer that now roam freely in Israel. The deer are the crowning achievement of a program that has also returned biblical onagers, oryxes and ostriches to the wild.
Wildlife preservation was a low priority during Israel's early years of statehood that changed with the passage of a conservation law in 1962. An active-duty general, Avraham Yoffe, a founding member of Israel's pre-statehood militia, the Hagana, and commander of the army division that captured Sharm al-Sheikh in 1956, was appointed head of the newly created Israeli Nature and Parks Authority.
Conservationists say the general, who died in 1983, waged war in defense of wildlife with the same zeal he had brought to the battlefield. The 1978 Iranian "deerlift" remains his most daring feat and his biggest success.
The Persian fallow deer stands about 3 feet tall at the shoulder, with a tawny coat, white spots and flattened antlers like those of a small moose. In the book of Deuteronomy, the deer was listed as one of the hoofed animals the Hebrews were allowed to eat. The Book of Kings says the animal was tithed to King Solomon by his subjects.
The last of the fallow deer in Israel were believed to have been hunted to extinction in the early 1900s. The species was thought to be extinct until the late 1950s, when the deer were rediscovered in Iran.
Mentioned in Deuteronomy, the Persian Fallow Deer is one of the rarest species of deer in the world. But in Israel's Hai Bar Nature Reserve, it's making a comeback. David Blumenfeld reports on the reintroduction of this biblical-era animal to its native land.
When Gen. Yoffe learned of the deer's existence, he began courting Iranian officials. He invited the shah's brother, Prince Abdol Reza Pahlavi, who was an avid hunter, to Israel's Negev Desert to hunt the rare Nubian ibex, a desert-dwelling mountain goat found in few places outside Israel. Months later, he arranged a second hunting trip for another senior Iranian wildlife official, Rashid Jamsheed, who bagged an ibex with more than 53-inch antlers, the Safari Club International world record to this day.
It was strictly forbidden to hunt the ibex, but then-Agriculture Minister Ariel Sharon, agreed to make an exception for his fellow general's pet project, says Mr. Van Grevenbroek, the Dutch zoologist whom Gen. Yoffe asked to lead the reintroduction effort.
Gen. Yoffe's efforts paid off. In 1978, the prince agreed to give Gen. Yoffe's Nature Authority four fallow deer. Later that year, Gen. Yoffe visited Iran to pick up the deer but had a mild heart attack as soon as he arrived in Tehran, recalls Itzik Segev, Israel's last military attaché to Iran. "As the general was being rolled onto the airplane on his stretcher, he turned to me, clutched my hand, and said, 'Segev, you will get me those deer,' " said Mr. Segev, who is now retired and living in a suburb of Tel Aviv.
In the following months, the Islamic revolution picked up steam. Massive popular protests turned violent. The teetering government declared martial law. In Paris, the Ayatollah Khomeini was preparing for his triumphant return to Iran.
At the Israeli Embassy in Tehran, diplomats and intelligence agents were frantically shredding documents and trying to evacuate the 1,700 Israelis living in Iran, says Mr. Segev. For Gen. Yoffe, the clock was ticking since his deal for the deer would collapse with the shah's government. He dispatched Mr. Van Grevenbroek to help Mr. Segev capture fallow deer.
Safari Club International
Rashid Jamsheed, the former director of Iran's Department of the Environment, posed by a Nubian Ibex in Israel's Negev Desert on New Year's Day, 1978.
After arriving in Tehran on Nov. 28, and taking a day to pull together supplies, Mr. Van Grevenbroek left for a game preserve on the Caspian Sea, a 10-hour drive from Tehran. His report to the Israeli nature authority concerning the trip shows he spent five days tracking, capturing and crating four deer before returning to Tehran late on Dec. 4. Meanwhile, Mr. Segev says he went to the Tehran game department to get the necessary export licenses for the deer.
The streets of Tehran were erupting. On Dec. 1, the Ayatollah Khomeini wrote a letter from exile in Paris calling on Iranians to spill "torrents of blood." On Dec. 2, more than one million Iranians marched through central Tehran. Mr. Segev recalls burned-out storefronts throughout the city, burning tires and the acrid smell of tear gas lingering in the air.
Fearing the angry mobs chanting "Death to America," he says, he ditched the Chevrolet Impala favored by VIPs for a low-profile Iranian-made Paykan coupe. He says he exchanged his starched military uniform for civilian rags as he moved stealthily about the city. "There was shooting all over the streets, and here I am, an Israeli general, going to the zoo," says Mr. Segev.
Prince Abdol Reza who had promised the deer to Israel had already fled Iran. Mr. Segev says government officials told him he would instead need to speak with the senior government veterinarian, a man named Mueller—nobody remembers his first name—to secure the necessary licenses. "I said, 'Mueller doesn't sound like an Iranian name,'" says Mr. Segev. "They told me, 'Mr. Mueller is from Germany.' "
They encountered a man who "was very pro-Germany and very anti-Israel. He was hysterical and screaming, 'I don't want these animals going to Israel,' " Mr. Van Grevenbroek recalls.
Persian fallow deer
Mr. Mueller said he would sign the license but only if the deer went to the Netherlands instead, according to Messrs. Segev and Grevenbroek. They said Mr. Mueller also conditioned his signature on their agreement to take the shah's prized cheetah and leopard to Germany as well since angry mobs were threatening to kill off the shah's menagerie. They agreed to Mr. Mueller's demands, but when they swung by to pick up the two big cats, the crowds had already broken into the zoo and killed them, they both said.
At dawn on Dec. 8, the deer's crates were nailed shut, loaded onto trucks and taken to the airport. They were loaded onto the last El Al flight out of Tehran, packed between mountains of carpets and valuables that fleeing Iranian Jews and Israelis were taking with them.
2. The anti-Israel New Israel Fund is under massive attack this week in the Israeli mainstream media, which is usually predominantly leftist. The editor of Maariv bashes them. There are hostile attacks on NIF in other Hebrew papers. Here is the latest round in English from the Jerusalem Post: http://www.jpost.com/Israel/Article.aspx?id=167527
The entire ruckus is entirely thanks to the efforts of the energetic and heroic Im Tirtzu Zionist student group that has grown in Israel. They issued a report, widely picked up in the Hebrew mainstream media, showing that 92% of the anti-Israel smears in the Goldstone report came from groups receiving NIF financing. Im Tirtzu is allied with Isracampus.org.il and both groups DESERVE YOUR SUPPORT!
Im Tirtzu maintains a web site at imti.org.il
3. Howard Zinn, Stalinist: http://frontpagemag.com/2010/02/02/howard-zinn%e2%80%99s-history-of-hate/
4. An Ex-Islamist Needs U.S. Support
A young Internet journalist is jailed in Mauritania for reporting the truth.
By KHALID LUM
Hanevy Ould Dahah, who is now being held in Mauritania's Dar Naim prison, is an unlikely dissident. Half-Arab and half-African, he was marked as a child to become a cleric, memorizing the Quran by age nine and studying at ultra-conservative academies. Some of his former classmates now lead Mauritania's Salafist movement; Hanevy might have been one of them.
I met Hanevy, now 34, for the first time last year, and I asked him about why he broke with the Islamists as an 18-year-old. He expressed disgust with the government's and elite society's tolerance of slavery. He also recounted the horror of witnessing a massacre of black Africans, a minority in Mauritania. The corrosive impact of his country's dictatorship and religious extremism, he explained, stunted society. Instead of a radical cleric, he became a reformer committed to secular democracy.
In 2007, Hanevy seized upon a unique opportunity. The fall of a 20-year dictatorship and presidential elections suggested that the time was ripe for new democratic experiments. He launched Taqadoumy.com (Arabic for "progressive"), a news portal in Arabic, French and English featuring investigative journalism unparalleled in the Arab world.
Despite limited resources, Hanevy recruited a team of reporters and was soon running the country's most-read news site—the local equivalent of the Drudge Report or the Huffington Post. Taqadoumy fearlessly exposed scandals and corruption, attracting thousands of readers with photos and documents providing hard evidence for sensational scoops.
But exposing the corruption of top government officials—including current president Gen. Mohamed Ould Abdel Aziz— brought retribution. Days after his Web site posted videos and photos of the president's agents falsifying ballots during last July's presidential election, he was arrested without a warrant.
After the fact, government officials invented a charge: publishing items "contrary to Islam and decent behavior." One of Taqadoumy's most popular sections is its open forum, where the country's frustrated youth have space to vent. The forum's motto draws on Voltaire's apocryphal words: "I may hate your opinion, but I will die for your right to say it."
But one young woman used the space to call for more sexual freedom. For that posting, a judge sentenced Hanevy to six months in Dar Naim, a prison whose Orwellian name means "House of Bliss."
Despite an international campaign by human-rights activists to free him, Hanevy served out his time, composing columns on scraps of paper as his staff continued to run the site. On Dec. 24, the sentence was complete, but jail officials would not allow him to return home. He remains indefinitely detained and recently held a 15-day hunger strike.
While independent North African journalists are often sent packing on a dictator's whim, the case of Hanevy Ould Dahah stands out for its brazenness. Even repressive regimes like to maintain the fiction of due process, so the decision to detain him for weeks after his sentence ended marked a dangerous new precedent.
On Jan. 14, in a cruel twist, the Supreme Court declared his trial illegal, and announced that he would be retried. Hanevy will thus remain in prison and will likely be resentenced for the same alleged crime.
The New York-based Committee to Protect Journalists has launched an urgent campaign on his behalf, calling Hanevy the victim of "a relentless campaign of persecution." Yet the organization's appeal to President Ould Abdel Aziz has gone unaddressed.
The State Department, which last year provided Hanevy with a visa to study English in the U.S., has not commented publicly on his plight. Nevertheless, the young journalist's courageous work evokes President Obama's declaration in Cairo in June of last year—that "all people yearn . . . for the ability to speak your mind and have a say in how you are governed."
Like millions of Muslims who listened to the president's words, Hanevy heard a call to action. If the U.S. is sincere in its support for democratic reform, the administration will publicly demand the immediate release of Hanevy Ould Dahah. He—and dissidents across the Middle East—are waiting.
Mr. Lum, a writer based in Boston, is a member of the American Islamic Congress's New England Council.
Copyright 2009 Dow Jones & Company, Inc. All Rights Reserved
5. Fighting Goldstone-itis: http://frontpagemag.com/2010/02/02/fighting-the-goldstone-report-2/
6. Let's use this: http://www.israelnationalnews.com/News/News.aspx/135827