All Jews are not Zionists

Theodor Herzl, (May 2, 1860 — July 3, 1904) was an Austro-Hungarianjournalist and the father of modern political Zionism. Though not a politician, Herzl was a shrewd and persistent diplomat who conceived the plan to pursue for a Palestinian homeland. He died in 1904 but left a bitter legacy for future generations



by Gulam Mitha


Though proven or unproven that it is a forgery, the Protocols of the Elders of Zion seem to be the guiding principle. It first appeared in Russia in 1903, only 7 years after Der Judenstaat (The Jewish State) by Theodore Herzl.

In an interview published in the New York World February 17, 1921, Mr. Henry Ford the  founder of the Ford Motor Company and father of modern assembly lines, put the case for the “Protocols of Zion” tersely and convincingly. He said: “The only statement I care to make about the Protocols is that they fit in with what is going on”. (more…)


Israelis or Jews?

Marital happiness depends, sometimes, on the racial purity of the lovers. This is the message that the citizen Baruch Marzel sent to Israeli supermodel Bar Rafaeli, who plans to marry the great Leonardo Di Caprio.

José Steinsleger


Marital happiness depends, sometimes, on the racial purity of the lovers. This is the message that the citizen Baruch Marzel sent to Israeli supermodel Bar Rafaeli, who plans to marry the great Leonardo Di Caprio.  “Not by chance you were born Jewish, he said.”  Does Baruch live among the Taliban of Afghanistan or does he sympathize with Iran’s ayatollahs? Neither one nor the other. Baruch is a Zionist colonist living in the occupied territories of Palestine and serves in the organization Lehava. That, in Christian, means flame, and in the original acronym: To Prevent Assimilation in the Holy Land.

A conclusive proof that the fundamentalist gangsters who rule Israel are pushing the faith of the Jews in a quagmire of confusion, atrocities and violations?

Not by chance you were born Jewish. Lehava strives to provide assistance to Jewish women who maintain relationships with Gentiles (especially when it comes to Arab men) to prevent marriages from being completed. And if couples do not agree, they travel to Cyprus, which has become the Las Vegas of Israel.

[Right: There are about as many Jews in the United States as there are in Israel. And Israel has as yet not declared whether it wants to be a Jewish state in accordance with the columns of filament (the commandments of Jewish religion) or a Western secular democracy].

Sociologist Sara Stricker investigated that between 150 and 200 couples travel monthly to Cyprus from Israel.  Since according to international law, Israel should recognize marriages performed abroad. But, as Striker said, 63 years after the founding of the state, “… Israel has not declared whether it wants to be a Jewish state in accordance with the columns of filament (the commandments of Jewish religion) or a Western secular democracy.”

Zionist propaganda identifies Israel as the most modern and democratic state in the Middle East. But what decisions on the other side of justice are taken into account for personal circumstances? Marriage, divorce or death are treated in Israel in absolutely sectarian terms.

On the other hand, Zionism does not care to explain why modern Israel is also the only one in the Western world in which there are only religious and not civil marriages. Or why not recognize marriages between Jews and Muslims or Christians, or between Jews and atheists?

Israeli law defines a Jew as a person whose mother is Jewish or has converted to Judaism and is not part of another religious community.  And this in spite of the amendment that grants this right to the son and to the grandson of a Jew; to the wife of a Jew; to the wife of the son of a Jew and to the wife of a grandson of a Jew, except to those that having been a Jew and have voluntarily changed religion.

In July 2005, the Knesset (Israeli parliament) decided to grant citizenship to Palestinians married to Israeli citizens, if the men were at least 35 years, and if the women were older than 25.  Good resource for practical purposes. For this way, only children born to Jewish parents are obliged to perform military service for two years, and we’ll see later if they are Jewish enough to marry in Israel.

If a Mexican who lives in Israel is converted to Judaism, they can acquire citizenship at the time of their conversion. But if Mexico (or any other country) regulates that Jews cannot become citizens under the same conditions as others, Zionist experts in ethics, altruism and morality put the signature that it will be seen as a test of anti-Semitism.


Source: Originally published in Translated from original Spanish version by: Lisa KARPOVA of PRAVDA.Ru
Disclaimer: The views expressed in this article are the sole responsibility of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of the ‘Wonders of Pakistan’. The contents of this article too are the sole responsibility of the author(s). WoP will not be responsible or liable for any inaccurate or incorrect statements contained in this post.



General Hamid Gul former Chief ISI talks to Alex Jones (Part 2)


    Pakistan’s former ISI Chief General Hamid Gul talks to ALEX JONES

      Alex Jones: We are back live. It is Dec. 9th, 2008. Gen. Hamid Gul, one of the most famous members of the — and commanders of Pakistani intelligence, who worked in — with the United States in the whole operation against the Russians — was the commander of those operations — is our guest, with us graciously until forty after.

      Anti terrorist force chief, who digged out the hand of certain police and the army officers in different terrorist activities, is killed

      Uh, General, uh, not wasting any more time, I listed earlier the fact that Indian intelligence captains in the army have been caught in India staging bombings. That’s Indian news. Uh, that Indian intelligence and police have been caught giving cell phones to the supposed shooters. The police stood down, and only the anti-terror commanders that had said that India was staging terror, they were killed in the initiation of the attacks in Mumbai. That’s some of the evidence of Mumbai being an inside job. Namely, why do you believe Mumbai is a staged event two weeks ago, (A), and (B), what is the motive?

      Hamid Gul: Well, the motive is very simple, that, uh, Americans want India to come on board with them in their War Against Terror, especially when they run out of troops in Afghanistan. The NATO allies are pulling out, they are dragging their feet, they are not prepared to fight there, but they want to make it an Indian cause, and they want nearly 150,000 troops in Afghanistan.

      Principal Motive of this being an inside Job is to denuclearize Pakistan

      That is one reason where there is an American motive. There is an Israeli motive, which is similar, that the Americans should not pull out of

      Afghanistan just because they are short of troops, so they must have more troops there. Because if they go away without denuclearizing Pakistan, the state of Israel will remain under perpetual danger. So they have an innate fear that Americans will lose heart and pull out of this region, they’re already going out of Iraq. And if they were to go out of Afghanistan, Israel — this will be an unfinished agenda, and Israel will be at the losing end.

      So, the NeoCons and the Zionists, they together want to hatch a conspiracy so that Obama gets trapped into a situation where for next four years he keep on sorting out this embroglio.

      As far as the ability is concerned, which is the other element, can you imagine that people traveling from Karachi in two rickety boats, they can travel all the way to Bombay and then go into action immediately and fight a battle for seventy-two hours, and there are just ten of them, and in each group there were two? This is impossible. They were carrying so much of munitions with them, and that, uh, that munition lasted till fighting withstood the — crack troops of India for so long.

      And you know that in Nariman House, the five Jewish hostages, they were killed by the Indian commandos. They were not killed by these people. So why would the Indian commandos kill them? And Israelis suppressed this information. It initially came out in one of the Indian dail — eh, Israeli dailies, but then it was suppressed.

      So if you go by the record of the Indian accusations against Pakistan, in the past ten years, uh, 2001 on December 13, there was an attack on the Indian Lok Sabha [lower house of Parliament], and they blamed Pakistan and Lashkar-e-Tayyaba for it, but it turned out that these were Indian Kashmiris themselves, and because India is causing so much atrocities in Kashmir, therefore there’s a good reason for them that they would — carry out something like that.

      Then the — again in 2006, there was the Samjhota Express case, in which 68 passengers, mostly Pakistanis were killed, and this train was stopped at an obscure railway station in Haryana, and then doors were locked and the train was set on fire, and again this was proclaimed that it was Pakistani Lashkar-e-Tayyaba, and they had done it because they wanted to derail the peace process. But, uh, Marshal Purohit, Shrikant Purohit has been caught in it, and there are other Indian officers who are, uh, or were his accomplices, and he has a big net worth — they — took the RDX from the Deolali depot, which is a military depot —

      Alex Jones: the explosives —

      Hamid Gul: so one can say there is a deep penetration of the militant Hindus in military and intelligence organizations in India.

      Militant Hindus wish to derail the peace process between India and Pakistan

      So in this case, why would they not do that, because they want to again derail this process, and when Obama says that he will mediate on Kashmir, and there is a Kashmiri [music begins] political movement picking up momentum, and in this situation he says that he would, uh, send, uh, Bill Clinton as the mediator. Obviously the militants in India do not want this to happen and they had to preempt it.

      So, Pakistan doesn’t gain, Pakistani ISI doesn’t gain anything from it. The next beneficiary is either the militant Hindu —

      Alex Jones: Stay there, sir, we have to break.

      Hamid Gul: who have their eye on the next election —

      Alex Jones: we have to break —


      Alex Jones: Well, ladies and gentlemen, a rare interview, extremely enlightening. We’re talking to the former head of Pakistani intelligence, the ISI. I want to thank Paul Watson, who will be on the line. He’s gonna pop in with a question or two. I want to thank, uh, Simon over in the UK for getting us this number. Thank Aaron for staying up late last night to get the producing job done to get this interview right here on the GCN Radio Network. Uh, General, continuing with motive, I have the headline here, “Pakistan Asserts ‘Hoax’ War Call Was Real — Press Minister fingers Indian High Commission as source of reports that threatening call was fake”.

      As you know this was in most of the Pakistani papers. The government has the caller ID and the phone records, that the threatening call, saying that India was going to attack within minutes of the terrorist attacks beginning in Mumbai a few weeks ago, this provocative call within minutes saying India was going to attack Pakistan, attempting to get Pakistan to move troops to the border and have a conflict, and the media saying possible war between the two thermonuclear powers was narrowly averted. Can you speak to that?

      Hamid Gul: Yes, indeed. I think the Americans and the Indians both have been very responsible about it, because Condoleezza Rice’s statement in America and in India when she went and visited Delhi. They were very threatening towards Pakistan, and it was sort of a dictation that “you have to satisfy India”. Now this is amazing, that Pakistan has to satisfy India. On what score? Indians have still to come out with the evidence. And as far as this one man whom they have caught, who knows that this is not a bogey, and that this man was loitering around somewhere. There’re plenty of Pakistanis who crossed the border illegally or legally, and he could have been picked up, and he’s become the front man for singing on those stories.

      Conventional war, limited war, within the nuclear environment is not possible in the subcontinent.

      So one doesn’t really know. It’s too early to start threatening war against Pakistan because Pakistan is a nuclear country, and if they brandish their power, conventional power, then I can assure you that as a soldier I will say that conventional war, limited war, within the nuclear environment is not possible in the subcontinent.

      And if it comes to an exchange of nuclear weapons, then this becomes a Third World War. China cannot stay out. Russia will not stay out. Russia is already showing its belligerence towards the — America and Europe. And China of course is a very major economic power. They are a nuclear power, and if this thing happens in their back yard they will not accept it.

      So this is a very dangerous situation. I think it is playing with the fire. So the whole thing is getting — could get out of hand. It is again, as I told you that the part of the unfinished agenda that the NeoCons had in their mind. And they think back now, “well, we carry it out, even though the Americans wanted a change.”

      But let’s look at what change means. I mean Obama has not too very clearly enunciated what change would be. But one can assume that change means focusing on the domestic issues. There is an economic meltdown, the car industry is going sick, and many other things are happening inside America, the social welfare and the Medicare extra trust.

      So as in all these things, there is a need for the new administration to focus entirely on the domestic issues —

      Alex Jones: well, General —

      Hamid Gul: and for that it will have to disengage externally.

      Alex Jones: General — as you know, in the last three months, before Obama was even elected, he said Pakistan and Afghanistan would be his main focus. The strikes inside Pakistan — it’s clear that his change means what Zbigniew Brzezinski wants, shifting — uh, what the RAND Corporation has said they want, shifting the war out of the Middle East into Central Asia.

      So I believe the change is gonna be these provocations. Look at the NeoCons, with Israeli and NATO-backed forces launching the sneak attack on the Russian held South Ossetia on 8/8/8. So it appears they are trying to launch a major — uh, larger than a theater war, as the RAND Corporation said a month ago, they want a major new war.

      Hamid Gul: Yes, indeed you’re right, because this is an old theory, [weet ul josaperry??] theory, first put out by MacKinder and then by Mahan, who was an admiral in the US Navy, that this is the rimland, you’ve got to first control the rimland in Asia before you can strike in the heartland of Asia. So this heartland/rimland thing, I think it tricked into the story —

      Alex Jones: geopolitical

      Hamid Gul: it tricked into the picture that, if they have a conflict in the rimland, and they can control it, then it becomes so much easier to go into the heartland.

      War on Terror is brinkmanship

      This is really asking too much when America is really not in a very healthy economic condition. So I think that this is brinkmanship of the highest order, and if they enlarge the area of conflict in this war against terrorism, and if they prolong the period of conflict, then America will definitely lose.

      Alex Jones: General —

      Hamid Gul: Because I know that when you are fighting the [illevel of??] fighters, and then the area of conflict is enlarged, let’s say you extend it into the tribal areas of Pakistan, or it is pushed into Kashmir as well, so the [canna??] can be monitored and watched quite easily, then the area will become larger and the US simply does not have the troops. And there is not a moral cause strong enough for the American people to be mobilized behind it.

      Alex Jones: So that’s why they staged

      Hamid Gul: So I don’t know — this is pure madness to be thinking of such things at this time.

      Alex Jones: So that’s why they need proxies like India to destabilize the region for the encirclement of Russia, and of course China, blocking those pipelines.

      Now, sir, in the time we’ve got left, you worked with the United States and Saudi Arabia, with Israel, or at least Pakistan did, fighting the Russian invasion. Uh, of course, if these reports are incorrect, correct me, but you were one of the main commanders helping the mujahideen. You were the head of Pakistani intelligence right at the time you had the victory against the Russians.

      It is reported here that al-Qaeda was founded by the new Secretary of Defense Gates and Zbigniew Brzezinski, uh, or, or that they were the Wahabist fighting corps, and that they are now being used to try to bring down the Pakistani government and to try to stage attacks inside India. So can you speak with your particular expertise to that, and then, also the fact that they are now trying to list you as a terrorist, and then thirdly, did you ever meet Osama bin Laden? Is Osama bin Laden dead many years ago of kidney failure, as Benazir Bhutto said?

      Hamid Gul: Well, uh, I was actually in charge of operations against the Soviet occupation of Afghanistan, and the Americans were providing the logistic support, and the Saudis were sharing one half of the budget for this war. And it was a cheap war because in all — there was uh ten years that we were fighting the Russians, we spent not more than five billion dollars out of the American exchequers. So it was a very cheap war for the Americans to have defeated the Russians and rid the whole of the West of this Red Menace that they used to call.

      So, at that time, Osama bin Laden and his, uh colleagues, they were admired and romanticised by the CIA operators. I had never met him then. I had nothing to do with him, because I was only busy training the Afghans. We had to win a war, we had a task on our hands, it was a very big task, and we were so occupied with the training only the Afghans. No other nation was trained by the ISI. I can vouch on that. Not a single person, not even a Pakistani was trained by them.

      Osama bin Laden was — you know, I — had never met him, but to the — these people used to come and talk glowingly about him. I met Osama bin Laden after my retirement from the army, in 1993 December in Khartoum, and then again in year, uh, 1994 November when I was went — I was there invited by a Hassan bin-Turabi to an international conference, and during that conference, Osama invited us to a banquet. And it was all in an open place, and, uh, where there were many other people present. I, uh, he struck me as a pretty normal human being, not the bloodthirsty animal that he is being presented by the CIA now.

      At that time no conversation between him and me took place. I don’t know whether he’s living or dead. But so far Ayman — Ayman al-Zawahiri has been given — eh, representing him in various interviews of Osama that have been put out.

      So one doesn’t really know. But the last interview, which was a voice interview, in that the CIA and the other US intelligence agencies authenticated that it was Osama’s voice. So one doesn’t really know whether he is living or dead.

      Alex Jones: Well, sir —

      Hamid Gul: But even if he is not living, he is a symbol. Al-Qaeda is a franchise. Whoever created that, and for whatever reason they created, I think it wasn’t there until 1996 when he was lodged in Khartoum. Later on he was —

      Alex Jones: General —

      Hamid Gul: — invited by [later Afghan President] Burhanuddin Rabbani, who is now part of the Northern Alliance in Kabul, and he came over and he set up his headquarters in a place called Tora Bora near Jalalabad. But, uhhh, that’s where one started hearing of al-Qaeda and the activities

      Alex Jones: Yes.

      Hamid Gul: of Osama bin-Laden.

      Alex Jones: General —

      Hamid Gul: And also the fact that his commander was responsible for bringing the “Blackhawk down” in the fierce operation in Mogadishu where an American aircraft was brought down by a Stinger, which had probably been supplied in Afghanistan to Afghan mujahideen.

      Alex Jones: OK, General —

      Hamid Gul: Yes —


      Children of Darkness – Killing “them” (Part 2)


      by David Edwards

         To be fair to the BBC, Rageh Omaar’s observation generalises: the whole of British journalism is a “white man’s club” dominated by the “class thing”. In March, media magnate Rupert Murdoch received the American Jewish Committee’s National Human Relations Award. The plaudits heaped on Murdoch recalled the words of the 4th century Buddhist poet, Aryasura:

      “When virtue is given as a name to one devoid of virtue, it has a harsh and grating sound, as if it were contempt instead of praise.” (Aryasura, The Marvelous Companion, Dharma Publishing, 1983, p.127)

      The man with so much influence over what the world knows and thinks gave an idea of his contribution to “human relations”:

      “Hamas has been raining down rockets on Israeli civilians. Like all terrorist attacks, the aim is to spread fear within free societies, and to paralyze its leaders. This Israel cannot afford. I do not need to tell anyone in this room that no sovereign nation can sit by while its civilian population is attacked.” ( k.7184/AJC_Honors_Rupert_Murdoch.htm)

      David Bromwich, professor of literature at Yale university, puts the argument in perspective: “We are offered an analogy: what would Americans do if rockets were fired from Canada or Cuba?… [But] the rockets are assumed to come suddenly without cause. The choking of the Gaza Strip by land, sea, and air, the rejection by the US of the Palestinian Unity Government, the coup launched by Fatah and bankrolled by the US, which ended in the seizure of power by Hamas — all of this happened before the rockets fell from the sky. It is as if it belonged to a pre-historic time.” ( /viewArticle/20746) The idea that Israel’s massacre of 1,400 Palestinians was intended to stop rocket attacks is hard to reconcile with the fact that Israel deliberately provoked those attacks when it broke the ceasefire with its November 4, 2008 attack killing six people in Gaza. As we have discussed ( 09/090204_the_bbc_impartiality.php), darker motives are hidden beneath the declared need to act in self-defence.  The Los Angeles Times reported last week:

      “The winter assault on the Gaza Strip was officially portrayed in Israel as an attempt to quell rocket fire by militants of Hamas. But some soldiers say they also were lectured about a more ambitious aim: to banish non-Jews from the biblical land of Israel. “‘This rabbi comes to us and says the fight is between the children of light and the children of darkness,’ a reserve sergeant said, recalling a training camp encounter. ‘His message was clear: “This is a war against an entire people, not against specific terrorists.” The whole thing was turned into something very religious and messianic.’” (Richard Boudreaux, ‘Israeli army rabbis criticized for stance on Gaza assault – Some Israeli soldiers say military rabbis cast the offensive against Hamas rockets as a fight to expel non-Jews,’ Los Angeles Times, March 24, 2009; 2009mar25,0,3336606.story?track=ntothtml)

      The LA Times added:

      “In testimony reported by Israeli news media and in interviews with The Times, Gaza veterans said rabbis advised army units to show the enemy no mercy and called for resettlement of the Palestinian enclave by Jews. “‘The rabbis were all over, in every unit,’ said Yehuda Shaul, a retired army officer whose human rights group, Breaking the Silence, has taken testimony from dozens of Gaza veterans. ‘It was quite well organized.’”

      Little or none of this exists for the “white man’s club,” Murdoch included. He warned, instead, against the notion that Israel was in any way in the ascendancy:

      “It’s true that Israel’s conventional superiority means it could flatten Gaza if it wanted. But the Israeli Defense Forces – unlike Hamas – are accountable to a democratically chosen government.  “No matter which party is in the majority, every Israeli government knows it will be held accountable by its people and by the world for the lives that are lost because of its decisions.”

      And yet “the world”, notably the United States, allowed Israel to continue its massacre with impunity. He continued:

      “Hamas knows that in some ways, dead Palestinians serve their purposes even better than dead Israelis. In the West we look at this and say, ‘It makes no sense.’ But it does make sense.  “If you are committed to Israel’s destruction, and if you believe that dead Palestinians help you score a propaganda victory, you do things like launch rockets from a Palestinian schoolyard. This ensures that when the Israelis do respond, it will likely lead to the death of an innocent Palestinian – no matter how many precautions Israeli soldiers take.”

      As discussed in Part 1, “that’s what makes us different to them”. The Financial Times provided a reality check for Murdoch’s commentary, citing a “string of damning reports” published last week in Israeli newspapers of soldiers’ testimonies, including evidence that troops shot at unarmed civilians. Some reported that they had been issued with “lax rules of engagement that placed little value on the safety of Gazan civilians.” The FT reported:

      “Among the incidents which the Israeli army said it would investigate were the shootings of a mother and her two children, who were ordered to leave their house but, misunderstanding the soldiers’ instructions, strayed into a ‘no-go’ zone where they were killed by sniper fire. A separate shooting of another Gaza woman was described by one soldier as “cold-blooded murder”.  “On Monday, a report by a UN human rights panel made fresh allegations, including the claim that Israeli soldiers used Palestinian civilians as human shields during the fighting. ‘Violations were committed on a daily basis, too numerous to list,’ said one of the report’s authors.” (Tobias Buck, ‘Israel dismissive as fury mounts,’ Financial Times, March 24, 2009)

      This was reported in the same week that Israel’s Haaretz newspaper published details of the images Israeli soldiers are having printed on the shirts they order to mark the end of training, or of duty in the field:

      “A T-shirt for infantry snipers bears the inscription ‘Better use Durex,’ next to a picture of a dead Palestinian baby, with his weeping mother and a teddy bear beside him. A sharpshooter’s T-shirt from the Givati Brigade’s Shaked battalion shows a pregnant Palestinian woman with a bull’s-eye superimposed on her belly, with the slogan, in English, ‘1 shot, 2 kills.’ A ‘graduation’ shirt for those who have completed another snipers course depicts a Palestinian baby, who grows into a combative boy and then an armed adult, with the inscription, ‘No matter how it begins, we’ll put an end to it.’” (

      Sociologist Dr. Orna Sasson-Levy, of Bar-Ilan University, commented:

      “This tendency is most strikingly evident among soldiers who encounter various situations in the territories on a daily basis. There is less meticulousness than in the past, and increasing callousness. There is a perception that the Palestinian is not a person, a human being entitled to basic rights, and therefore anything may be done to him.” (Ibid)

      Readers may feel it is unfair to focus on Murdoch. He is of the hard-right and, after all, there is a spectrum. As Murdoch’s employee, Rod Liddle, commented in the Times:

      “Proper western liberal democracy is about accommodating all forms of fabulous stupidity, even the sort of stuff which comes from people who, if we’re honest, might feel more at home hunkering down in a cave somewhere in the Afghan-Pakistani borderlands. They hate us, implacably. It is a visceral loathing…”  ( columnists/rod_liddle/article5908258.ece)

      Again, “that’s what makes us different to them”. We can easily take the Spectrum Test by turning once more to the Guardian’s Madeleine Bunting, who comments from the more fragrant end of “proper western liberal democracy”. What is her take on the beasts in human form that are the Taliban?

      “What is clear is that this is an easy war for the Taliban. They may lack military technology but they don’t need it; all they need is patience, men and weapons, and they have plenty of all three. They have none of the constraints imposed by European electorates on body counts; careless of their own men’s lives, they can use the deaths of opponents and civilians to their advantage.” ( 2009/mar/23/afghanistan-military-terrorism)

      The Murdoch view, in other words. This has been the one saving grace for all Third World opponents of high-tech Western firepower through the ages – they do not value life as highly as we do. We might think they are not having an “easy war” – we are blowing many thousands of them to kingdom come, after all – but this is merely to project our own human sensitivities onto the “children of darkness”. In truth, their indifference to the fate of their own people is probably beyond our powers of conception. In 2006, novelist Martin Amis described how Iran, “our natural enemy,” would be willing to accept a nuclear attack in order to realise its dark dreams:

      “They feel they can absorb this hit and destroy Israel.” (Amis, This Week, October 12, 2006)

      After all, what would a few million incinerated men, women and children mean to an “enemy” so “careless of their men’s lives”? They have no feeling for the people we currently slaughter in the thousands and hundreds of thousands – they would be unmoved by the addition of a few zeros. One does not need to be a highly paid therapist to perceive the actual projection: “They” could not care less for the lives of the people +we+ slaughter so casually. And so “they”, rather than we, are to blame. Corporal Matthew ‘Des’ Desmond of the UK’s 2nd Parachute Regiment described how he shot a Taliban fighter from two metres:

      “There is no emotional attachment, you’d feel more anguish shooting a bunny rabbit.” ( /oct/26/military-afghanistan)

      The comment was made, the Guardian noted, with a rueful smile.  How ironic – utterly unlike our “natural enemy”, we are united by a common indifference to their destruction.  Of course, “at the end of the day” he “could have been a normal person”. The British soldier, that is.

      Iraq Epidemiologist Body Count

      If there is a democratic constraint, it is on our body counts. Honest attempts to count the bodies of the “different” ones, the “children of darkness”, are perceived as threats to be attacked, smeared, denigrated and dismissed by “proper western liberal democracy”. Thus, some of the world’s greatest experts in the field of epidemiology find their careers joining a casualty count of hardball propaganda.  A BBC whistleblower wrote to us (asking to remain anonymous) quoting from one of our media alerts:

      Dear Davids,  “Have journalists learnt nothing from recent history?”  The answer, I fear, is nothing.  I work at BBC World Service and this email was recently sent as a group to everyone.  “Chris Booth, Baghdad bureau chief, tells me the following two websites are a good point of reference for casualty figures in Iraq (classified by time period, nationality etc). Useful for graphics and cues (with attribution):  “ for military casualties (also deals with Afghanistan)  “ for civilian casualties (NB this is not a definitive count, but a trusted estimate, so needs to be qualified).” It was from a producer. Unsurprising, unfortunately, that there is no mention of the ORB survey. Even given the recent update of the survey.  Anyway, I thought you’d find it interesting, depressing and perhaps useful.  Appreciate if you don’t mention my name.  best wishes  Name Withheld (Email to Media Lens, March 20, 2009)

      No mention of the Opinion Research Business [ORB] survey reporting 1,033,000 deaths (January 2008, Newsroom_details.aspx?NewsId=88), nor of the 2004 and 2006 Lancet studies. That the BBC’s Baghdad Bureau Chief can believe that Iraq Body Count offers an “estimate” of the death toll in Iraq is staggering. In fact, it offers a figure based on media reports of violent civilian deaths in a country where journalists, who have been targeted and killed in large numbers, have been unable to function during the awesome violence that has accompanied the occupation (data from morgues and government records have been added in recent years).  The IBC website team – which is as qualified to act as a primary source on the Iraqi death toll as we are – is “trusted” by the mainstream media because it offers an extremely low number, has a superficial veneer of academic rigour, and has not been subjected to the unrelenting attacks mounted on studies offering higher numbers.  Stephen Soldz, Director of the Center for Research, Evaluation, and Program Development at the Boston Graduate School of Psychoanalysis, notes:

      “We have recently learned that Gilbert Burnham, the lead author of second Lancet study, has been sanctioned by Johns Hopkins for deviating from the approved IRB protocol and collecting the names of many survey respondents, a fact that was implicitly denied in numerous public pronouncements.” ( znet/viewArticle/20890)

      This collecting of names potentially placed lives at risk, although it is thought that no one was in fact harmed. But Soldz argues that Burnham’s lapse means Lancet II’s estimate can no longer be trusted:

      “If one major methodological detail was distorted, we simply cannot know whether other aspects of the study were carried out as stated.”

      It is a bold leap of doubt to take on such an important issue. After all, a key finding of Johns Hopkins’ internal investigation, unmentioned by Soldz, took a different view:

      “Inclusion of identifiers did not affect the results of the study.” ( press_releases/2009/iraq_review.html)

      We asked John Tirman, Executive Director of MIT’s Center for International Studies, for his opinion on March 18:

      Hi John Hope you’re well. We exchanged some emails last year. I wonder if you agree with Stephen Soldz’s comments on the findings of the internal investigation by Johns Hopkins into the 2006 Lancet study on mortality in Iraq: “This error, and its possible coverup in subsequent public statements means that, in my opinion, we can no longer rely upon the Lancet II mortality estimates. If one major methodological detail was distorted, we simply cannot know whether other aspects of the study were carried out as stated. “Until and unless there is far greater detail on these methods, I do not feel that their estimate of 650,000 post-invasion surplus deaths can be trusted.” ( Isn’t that an irrational response, unless the misbehaviour affected the results? There’s no indication that it did. Gilbert Burnham was censured personally. The study wasn’t impugned.  What are your views (for quoting please)? Best wishes David

      Tirman replied on March 19:

      David, Yes, I agree with you, and the Hopkins statement makes clear that the confusion about identifiers (in Arabic) has nothing to do with the integrity of the methods and their implementation. In fact, the Hopkins review verified that the data was collected and entered properly, something several critics have harped on for 30 months. It’s now clear that the data and the analysis are solid. Of course, there could have been a sampling error, but that is always a risk; I don’t believe we can see one, and the main-street-bias folks are simply off kilter on this, as I’ve explained before. It is interesting how this small cadre of harpies persists the argue [sic] on diminishing grounds, when the IBC and DoD numbers, and the MoH/WHO survey, goes without critical comment. This tells us what they’re up to.  My own estimate, for what it’s worth, of the current figures, using the earlier surveys and the IBC trend line, is between 800,000 and 1.3 million dead as of January. The numbers of displaced, widows, etc., is supporting evidence.  Thanks for keeping up with this. Best, John

      As Noam Chomsky has often noted, the propaganda system will embrace any level of idiocy and error, if it is in the best interests of power. Describe all attacks in Iraq as the result of “al-Qaeda”, for example, and no-one even notices. On the other hand, contributions that harm powerful interests trigger the most exhausting and exacting standards of scrutiny.  The two Lancet studies have been faced with exactly that, endlessly, and still their results and basic methodology have not been found wanting. We wonder how many similar studies, if subjected to a similar level of hostility and examination, would emerge spotless. The effect is powerful, particularly in the academic world, where any hint of political controversy is damaging. Perhaps because such conflagrations are quite rare, there is a tendency to assume that there must surely be +some+ fire amidst all that smoke. But that is often not the case in politics, where propaganda may well be unrelieved, cynical deceit.  The reality of the US-UK catastrophe in Iraq is, or could be, a major catastrophe for US-UK propaganda – for the lie of benevolence that gives policy free rein. And so an absolute torrent of mud has been directed at the Lancet studies. A clear cut victory has never been sought – the goal is simply increased confusion, additional doubt. The technical term: mud sticks! This is the power of flak, and one result, at least, is very clear – the courageous, compassionate, sincere and highly qualified lead authors of the Lancet reports have been, for the moment at least, silenced.

      Suggested Action

      The goal of Media Lens is to promote rationality, compassion and respect for others. If you do write to journalists, we strongly urge you to maintain a polite, non-aggressive and non-abusive tone. Write to Hugh Sykes at the BBC Email: Write to Steve Herrmann, BBC online editor Email: Write to Madeleine Bunting at the Guardian Email: Write to Alan Rusbridger, editor of the Guardian  Email: Please send a copy of your emails to us  Email:

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      Israeli Attacks on Ghaza (Action & Reaction)


      Laxton was alleged to have been watching TV reports of the Israeli attack on Gaza as he used an exercise bike in a gym when he began the tirade

      The following post comes from Israel Shamir.

       To apprise my readers about the writer and Rowan Laxton, here is a pin up on the two.

       Am giving this to enable our readers have a peep into the background of the gentlemen who expressed their thoughts on Israel’s recent acts of savagery in Gaza.

       I do give in many may consider this as being harsh on Israel, because in today’s world, opposing Israel’s aggressive policies vis-à-vis its adversaries, the Arabs (both the Muslims and the Christians) is equivalent to being anti-Semitic. It could also be on account of our being anti Israel merely because its a Jewish state which I think isn’t fair either. It, therefore, shouldn’t mean if anybody criticizes Israel’s Zionism, he should be termed racial and anti-Semitic, which happened in case of Rowan Laxton. 

           May be a lot of our readers do not know that all Israelis are not so myopic as the ruling Zionistic elite in Israel are, as there are also Jews in Israel who want to live in peace with their Arab neighbors.  Yet it’s the Zionists who believe in Israel which as a state they think should ultimately have the whole Arabian Peninsula under their domain. 

      Israel Shamir

      Israel Shamir

      Israel Shamir, whose post now follows, is himself a Jew, is a radical spiritual and political thinker, Internet columnist and writer. His comments on current affairs and their deeper meaning are published on his site and elsewhere. His works are also collected in three books, Galilee Flowers, Cabbala of Power and recently published Masters of Discourse available in English, French, German, Spanish, Russian, Arabic, Norwegian, Swedish, Italian, Hungarian etc. 

           A native of Novosibirsk, Siberia, Shamir moved to Israel in 1969, served as paratrooper in the army and fought in the 1973 war. After the war, he turned to journalism and writing. In 1975, he joined the BBC and moved to London. In 1977-79 he was living in Japan. After returning to Israel in 1980, Shamir wrote for the Israeli daily newspaper Haaretz, and was the Knesset spokesman for the Israel Socialist Party (Mapam). 

           He has translated and annotated the cryptic works of S.Y. Agnon, the only Hebrew Nobel Prize winning writer, from the original Hebrew into Russian. In 2006 he published his mammoth annotated translation of a medieval Hebrew classic Sefer Yohassin (The Book of Lineage) and has also translated the Odyssey, and selected chapters of Joyce’s Ulysses. 

           And now about Rowan Laxton

           Rowan Laxton a Middle East expert and a high ranking official in Britain’s Foreign Office, was arrested after allegations that he launched a foul-mouthed anti-Semitic tirade.

           Laxton, 47, was watching TV reports of the Israeli attack on Gaza as he used an exercise bike in a gym. Stunned staff and gym members allegedly heard him shout: ‘F**king Israelis, f**king Jews’. It is alleged he also said Israeli soldiers should be ‘wiped off the face of the earth’.

          His rant reportedly continued even after he was approached by other gym users.

           Laxton, who is still working normally, is head of the South Asia Group at the Foreign Office, on a salary of around £70,000. He is responsible for all the UK’s diplomacy in that area and for briefing Foreign Secretary David Miliband, who is Jewish. 

          Mr Laxton has worked extensively in the Middle East – is married to a Muslim woman (since 2000), and has been deputy ambassador to Afghanistan.

      Note: There is an unsanitized Youtube video on the raid, courtesy Aljazeera TV.

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