Friday, July 15, 2011

An Aye for an Eye

1. Israel's Supreme Court took yet another step towards suppressing
freedom of speech when it ruled this week that telling the truth is no
defense against being charged with the crime of "insulting a public
official." Israel is probably the only democracy on earth that has a
Soviet-like law against offending public servants. In the case in
question, a man stood alone in front of a police station with a sign
that read, "Officer A.A. should be fired because he collaborates with
criminals against those who have complained against the criminals.
Rotten apples must go." The protester was arrested and charged with
insulting a public servant. He was sentenced to prison, but paroled,
and fined. He appealed on grounds that what he said was factually

An expanded panel of nine Supreme Court judges just ruled that factual
correctness is no defense against the charge of insulting a public
figure in Israel, at least when the insulter is a non-leftist. The
ruling was written by retiring judge Ayala Procaccia, the judge who
sent 14 year old religious girls to prison with no trial because they
had participated in a rightwing demonstration. See this: and

While dissenting over whether the sign in question had actually
insulted the public servant, among the judges joining in voting
unanimously for the ruling was Supreme Court Deputy Chief Justice
Eliezer Rivlin. We will be commenting shortly on Rivlin's hostility
to freedom of speech in Israel and refusal to squash SLAPP suits.

2. Makor Rishon today carries a fascinating report.
One Matan Cohen, a member of the "Anarchists against the Wall"
terrorist group, which attacks Israeli police and soldiers violently
each week in alliance with Palestinian terrorists, lost an eye. His
"anarchists" group is claiming he lost the eye when he was shot by a
rubber bullet fired by an Israeli border patrolman (border patrol is a
branch of the police). His "martyrdom" is the banner being waved by
the anarcho-fascists in their international campaign to raise some
money for themselves.

Only one itsy-bitsy problem with this. It turns out that an Israeli
court examined the case and ruled that Matan Cohen's eye was put out
by a Palestinian (throwing a rock?) and not be any border patrolman.
The judge in the case, Dalia Granot, repeatedly called Cohen a liar in
her ruling, and noted his frequent changing of his story. Expert
witnesses proved his eye was not damaged by any rubber bullet, as he
and his anarcho-fascist friends keep insisting.

3. Who says Palestinians do not know how to show their gratitude
towards those who benefit them? Some Palestinians stole the car of
Amir Peretz, a leader in the Labor Party and a one-time contender for
the party's lead position, before that serving as the head of the
Histadrut crime family. PLO "cops" – who differ from regular
terrorists in the beret that they wear – spotted the car, found it
belonged to Peretz, so they returned it to him.

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