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Emet m'Tsiyon

Monday, November 23, 2009

The West Is Getting Ready to Surrender to the Ayatollahs over Iran's Nuclear Project

UPDATINGS 12-10, 14, 17, 19-2009 at bottom

Anti-Zionism is the anti-imperialism of fools

The Obama administration, even more so than the Bush administration before it, goes through some ineffective, rather transparent motions pretending to try or pretending to want to prevent Iran from obtaining a nuclear bomb. But in Europe, some serious people are very worried indeed, as Israelis are. We have already noted French President Sarkozy's rather overt criticism of Obama for not taking the Iranian bomb project seriously enough, for not doing anything really capable of stopping A-jad's quest for the bomb. Some French political authors have written seriously on the subject, more than is usual --it seems-- in the USA where Columbia University seems to have considered it perfectly acceptable to accept a large cash "contribution" from an Iranian-controlled foundation in exchange for inviting A-jad to speak at Morningside Heights.

In Italy too concerned voices have been raised. Indeed, the Italian political commentator, Carlo Panella, recently wrote that the West is getting ready to surrender on the Iranian nuclear issue, while the newspaper Il Foglio deplores Muhammad al-Barada'is' endeavors to water down and obfuscate the issue and conceal Iran's rather obvious nuclear bomb intentions. Panella discusses the futility of the Geneva talks --if one really wants to end Iran's nuclear bomb project, as well as criticizing Obama for temporizing.
Muhammad al-Barada'i took on the not so difficult task of explaining to the world --i.e. to Barack Obama-- what it means to be awarded the Nobel Peace Prize that he received in 2005: playing three cards, cheating naturally. He did not deny himself yesterday when, at the end of the second Geneva meeting on the Iranian nuclear project between Teheran's delegation and the Four Plus One (USA, UK, France, Russia plus Germany), he triumphantly announced: "It was a good beginning"!
. . . .
Even worse, after Ali Shirizadian, the Iranian spokesman, announced that the transfer of uranium enrichment abroad, the subject of the negotiations, was only meant to contain costs, but did not in fact mean the end of the enrichment programs developed in Iran or the full transfer of these programs outside the country." In short, Iran will never transfer all of the nuclear processing outside its borders (and therefore will be quite free to obtain the heavy uranium that it needs for the atomic bomb) and will restrict itself to transferring a part of it abroad, but only for the savings. A solemn joke at the expense of the gullible, to which was added a dry kick in the teeth for France that Iran accuses of thwarting the negotiations. Therefore, it will never ever agree to transfer any enrichment processing to that country. A humiliation of one of the principal countries seated at the negotiating table, which follows dozens of other provocations.
. . .
Therefore, the Geneva negotiations are turning out to be what Iran wanted them to be: a loss of time which allows the pasdaran and the ayatollahs to proceed undisturbed to bestow an atomic bomb on themselves. It is the nth confirmation of the total failure of the "change" undertaken by Barack Obama, of the end of the carrot and stick policy started by George W Bush, and the obvious result of the end of any threat of reprisal against Iran --including military-- that the new president wanted. From delay to delay, Obama has given the Iranian military atomic program more than one year's time to develop undisturbed (Bush suspended his policy, based on negotiations but also on concrete military threats, in the Fall of 2008, specifically on the possibility that Obama might win the elections and make it moot), and now he continues to move back the date of a final check. First he set the end of September and then the end of October. Now it will go to December and then he will continue temporizing. Obama is giving the world a proof of extraordinary weakness and absolute blindness. He is demonstrating that he fully deserved the Nobel Peace Prize. Like al-Barada'i.

Here is Panella's original:
Mohammed el Baradei si è assunto il non difficile compito di spiegare al mondo –ae a Barack Obama- cosa significhi essere insignito del Nobel per la Pace, che ricevette nel 2005: giocare alle tre carte, barando, naturalmente. Non si è smentito ieri, quando, a conclusione del secondo incontro di Ginevra sul nucleare iraniano, tra la delegazione di Teheran e i “quattro più uno”, ha annunciato trionfante: “E’ stato un buon inizio”!
. . . . .
Ancor peggio, dopo che Ali Shirizadian, portavoce iraniano, ha annunciato che lo spostamento dell’arricchimento dell’uranio all’estero –oggetto della trattativa di Ginevra- punta solo ad un contenimento dei costi, ma che non significa affatto la fine dei programmi d’arricchimento sviluppate in Iran o il trasferimento integrale di queste operazioni al di fuori del paese”. Insomma, l’Iran non trasferirà mai l’intero processo nucleare fuori dalle sue frontiere (e quindi sarà liberissimo di arrivare all’uranio pesante che gli serve per la bomba atomica) e si limiterà a spostarne una parte all’estero, ma solo per risparmiare. Una solenne presa per i fondelli, a cui si aggiunge un secco calcio nei denti alla Francia che l’Iran accusa di avversare la trattativa, per cui mai e poi mai accetterà di trasferire nessun processo di arricchimento in quel paese. Una umiliazione ad uno dei principali paesi seduti al tavolo della trattativa, che segue decine di altre provocazioni. . .
. . . . . .
La trattativa di Ginevra si conferma dunque per quel che l’Iran voleva che fosse: una perdita di tempo, che permette ai pasdaran e agli ayatollah di procedere indisturbati a dotarsi di una bomba atomica. E’ l’ennesima conferma del fallimento pieno della “svolta” impressa da Barack Obama, della fine della politica della carota e del bastone avviata da Gorge W. Bush e il risultato ovvio della fine di ogni minaccia di ritorsione all’Iran –inclusa quella militare- che il nuovo presidente ha voluto. Di rinvio in rinvio, Obama ha dato al programma militare atomico iraniano più di un anno di tempo per svilupparsi indisturbato (Bush sospese la sua politica basata su trattative, ma anche concrete minacce militari, nell’autunno 2008, proprio nell’eventualità che Obama vincesse le elezioni e che la vanificasse) e ora continua a spostare in avanti la data per una verifica finale. Prima inidcò fine settembre, poi fine ottobre, ora si andrà a dicembre e poi si continuerà temporeggiando. Una prova di debolezza straordinaria e di cecità assoluta che Obama sta dando al mondo, dimostrando però di essere pienamente meritevole del Nobel per la Pace. Come el Baradei. [qui]

Arab agreement with Israel on the Iran nuclear bomb project and concomitant disagreement with the Obama Administration on that issue.
Curiously, while the American president, Mr Obama, seems to be consciously allowing Iran to develop a nuclear bomb, some Europeans, so often derided by Americans in the past for softness on threats to Western civilization, find that it is Obama and his administration who are soft on the threat represented by Ahmadinajad's Iran, not only Carlo Panella in Italy but in France, President Sarkozy, Francois Thual, Richard Darmon, Michel Gurfinkiel and others.

Several years ago I wrote here that it seemed that nobody really important in the West wanted to stop the Iranian bomb and therefore, that that bomb would become real. Unfortunately, my ominous prophecy was right. I don't always want to be right [also see here]

Barry Rubin on Obama's collaboration in building the Iranian nuclear bomb [here]
Prof Jean-Pierre Bensimon argues that "the cost of a nuclear Iran is certainly infinitely greater than what Western experts now assign to it" while "an ideology of appeasement is now winning a decisive victory among the Western decision-makers," including Obama [in French ici]
Ari Shavit of HaArets faults Obama's leadership [here]. ". . . Obama is liable to leave our children a world in a state of nuclear vertigo. If the Nobel laureate does not want to be remembered as the leader in whose term of office the nuclear genie escaped from the bottle . . . must gain his composure immediately. He must use the little time remaining to lead a resolute campaign against the extremist forces acquiring nuclear capability."
12-14-2009 A document in Farsi describing a detonator for a nuclear bomb said to have been found [here]
12-17-2009 Carlo Panella writes [qui] that Obama should stop thinking that harassing Israel will solve the problem of the Iranian nuclear bomb project.
12-19-09 Former French official Olivier Debouzy in the Wall Street Journal [here]

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Sunday, November 15, 2009

The Muslim Militants of the Organization of the Islamic Conference Initiated the "Goldstone Report"

UPDATING links added 11-17 & 11-27-2009 & 4-2010&10-4-2010 at bottom

Anti-Zionism is the anti-imperialism of fools

The secretary-general of the Organization of the Islamic Conference boasts that his body started off the whole process of the Judeophobic Goldstone Report:
"Ekmeleddin Ihsanoglu: Let me first start by completing the story of the history of the Goldstone report. What I would like to put on record is that the OIC was the initiator of this process." [see here]
On January 3, during the attacks on Gaza, we convened the executive committee of the OIC on a ministerial level. It was decided that the OIC group in Geneva should ask the Human Rights Council to convene and consider the possibility of sending a fact-finding mission to Gaza. [here]

The OIC was instrumental in getting through this resolution and thanks to the good offices of Ms Pilay, the UN high commissioner [for "human rights"], that she formed this fact-finding mission headed by Judge Goldstone.
In other words, it was not a body of disinterested humanitarians and zealots for peace and international law who initiated the Goldstone Report. It was a Muslim body, a very interested, party, a partisan body on the side of Muslim interests that initiated the whole process of the Goldstone Report. Note that the UN "Human Rights" Council works hand in glove with the Organization of the Islamic Conference [OIC] that basically supports the Cairo Declaration of Human Rights which aims to vitiate the 1948 UN Universal Declaration of Human Rights. The Cairo Declaration has been analyzed by David Littman [here] and by Carlo Panella [in his book, Il "Complotto Ebraico", L'Antisemitismo Islamico da Maometto a Bin Laden (Torino: Lindau 2005)]

Let us quote from Article 1b of the Cairo Declaration in order to see how subtle and smooth these Islamists can be in affirming Muslim superiority and the Muslim right to supremacy.
All human beings are subject to God and the most beloved by Him are those who are most useful to the rest of His subjects, and no one has superiority over the others except on the basis of piety and good actions. [Article 1 b, Panella, p 247]
Now, just who are "the most beloved. . . who are most useful to the rest"? In any event, some are superior to others "on the basis of piety and good actions." Now, who are truly pious if not Muslims --and only Muslims-- in the view of the OIC? Whose actions are truly good and what are those "good actions"? Could establishing Islamic law, shari`ah, throughout the world and making Muslims superior to all others be a "good action"? Could fighting a jihad be a "good action" as Muslim law affirms?

So those who deny universal human rights and universal human equality guide the actions ["good actions"?] of the UN "human rights" council!

On the corruption of the UN human rights council's predecessor, the human rights commission, consider how Christian Rocca put it, in an article for Il Foglio April 27, 2005.
At the UN, the Torturers Watch over Human Rights

China, Cuba, Sudan, Syria, Saudi Arabia and Libya have three things in common: they are ferocious dictatorships, they reject the concept of human rights, and they are enthusiastic members of the UN Human Rights Commission. In 2003, Libya even presided over its work... The regimes that torture and repress and keep their own subjects in chains are never missing from the Commission. Indeed, they are the ones that seek most tenaciously to get a seat at Geneva.... Even Kofi Annan's wise men have recognized that some countries go into the Commission "not to reinforce human rights but to protect themselves against criticism or to criticize other countries."
Note that Sudan, Syria, Saudi Arabia, and Libya are all members of the OIC which endorses the Cairo Declaration on Human Rights, meant to vitiate the original 1948 UN Universal Declaration of Human Rights. We plan to post on torture in Libya in the case of the Bulgarian nurses falsely charged with injecting AIDS virus into Libyan children as scapegoats for Libyan medical failure. A Palestinian Arab doctor was also charged along with the Bulgarian nurses and he too was jailed for eight years.

The OIC also overlooks any Jewish heritage, any Jewish holy places in Jerusalem, essentially it disregards any Jewish history in Jerusalem. It recognizes only Arab rights and Muslim and Christian holy places which, of course, would not have had any meaning in Jerusalem were it not for the prior Jewish history and Jewish holy places there.
About two weeks ago at Unesco's general assembly in Paris, I [Ihsanoglu] called on the UN and Unesco to declare East Jerusalem, the historical city of Jerusalem, as a world historical site - untouchable. That way it would preserve the Muslim and Christian monuments.

We hope that the political will of the 57 member states of the OIC will be able to levy international pressure - through various channels - on Israel to stop threatening the al-Aqsa Mosque. [here]
Of course, no mention is made of the Temple Mount as a Jewish holy site which was the original direction of prayer of the Muslim prophet Muhammad. Nor are Jewish rights on and to the Temple Mount recognized.

- - - - - - - - - - - - - -
Our previous post on the Moral Incompetence of the UNHRC [here]
La Dichiarazione del Cairo sui diritti umani nel Islam [qui]. Commenti da Carlo Panella [qui]
Moshe Sharon [Hebrew U prof] on Islam as a conquering, imperialist religion [see excerpts here]
Hugh Fitzgerald on UN corruption in general, and pro-Arab Judeophobic corruption in particular [here]
For a more comprehensive view of the UNHRC'S "fact-finding commission report," see the Understanding the Goldstone Report blog [here]
4-2010 Anne Bayefsky reports on OIC domination of the UNHRC and the dangerous, destructive futility of America's joining that corrupt body [here] plus the Obama administration's submission to OIC values and purposes.
10-4-2010 Bat Yeor on the OIC and its purposes [here]

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Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Using Hated or Loved Personal Names as a Device for Emotional Manipulation

David Solway explains the use of personal names of hated or loved persons or things as a device to arouse emotions, manipulate behavior and sympathies and have the audience skip over thinking. I do not necessarily agree with all of Solway's political judgments, but he explains the phenomenon very well.

Bush Is a Liar, Obama Is a Savior: The Rhetoric of Propaganda

by David Solway, on November 10, 2009 @ 12:35 am, Column2 02, | 29 Comments

Lecturing in a poetry class a few years back, I had occasion to mention the rhetorical device called antonomasia. I was astonished afterward to learn that one of my students had assumed I was referring to a royal personage [1] executed by the Bolsheviks. Now Anastasia is a charming name with loads of popular appeal but its proper sphere of application is chronicle or romance. I patiently explained that, despite the reminiscent ring, antonomasia is not the name of a Romanov princess or, for that matter, of a famousinternational dating service [2], specializing in mail-order brides (“the fastest way to reach thousands of Russian ladies”). It is a persuasive rhetorical trope which can be manipulated in a number of different ways, most pertinently as the use of a personal name to indicate a common noun or express a general idea. Typical examples are “Solon” for “wise legislator” (or “wisdom”) and “Hitler” for “evil despot” (or “pure evil” itself).

True, Cervantes gave the name “Antonomasia” to a fictional princess in Don Quixote [3]. But in fact he intended the word in its literal acceptation, applying “Antonomasia” antonomastically to stand for the nature of contemporary poetry — something the confused sophomore might have cited to rescue his dignity. In any event, this rather pixilated episode got me to wondering about the influence of antonomasia in everyday verbal transactions and especially in political discourse, since the latter is where it is used most cogently. Its effect can be so subtle that, if we are not alert to the force of enchantment it exerts, it can prevent us from thinking clearly. It can, when all is said and done, seduce no less compellingly than a blond Russian girl.

A little attention should reveal that when it comes to the discussion of current political issues, there is a kind of robotic reaction at work among many intelligent and well-meaning people, as if it were based in the autonomic nervous system or the solar plexus and not in the centers of thought. It hinges not on reasoning but on desire. To take a resonant example, the name “Bush” was (and is) met by a chain of verbal and emotional equivalents: “liar,” “moron,” “oil baron,” “imperialist,” swathed in a penumbra of knowing contempt. Each term of abuse triggered by the name is then made to stand for the United States itself.

The corollary was that if Bush were only chased from office, the antonomastic link would be broken and the United States would no longer be the country that it was, or was understood to be. The fact that President Clinton’s inactivity and not President Bush’s putative warmongering did much to bring the present conflictual situation upon us is conveniently dismissed from consideration. And the possibility that the United States under Bush was at least to some extent justified in its chosen course of action is, obviously, a complete non-starter.

The reverse operation is equally effective. Utter the name “Obama” and a host of surrogate terms leap to mind — “savior,” “new man,” “peacemaker,” “The One,” or, in the words of Newsweek editor Evan Thomas, no less than a “sort of god [4]” — which are immediately reified as undoubted facts. Despite Obama’s recent, self-inflicted troubles and the crisis of confidence in which he is increasingly embroiled, he is still regarded by the MSM, the liberal-left, the Oslo peaceniks, and approximately half the American electorate as sacrosanct, as “good,” “honest,” “reliable,” “noble.” Like spellbound children following the Pied Piper, the epithets cling to the name. They are then associated in swift antonomastic transfer with a newborn, a “different,” America.

There is no awareness among the true believers — and especially among the myrmidons of the left — that they have been deluded by nomenclature, by the semiotic condensation of amorphous ideas and obscure but powerful feelings. As in the first case where a process of reevaluation is all but proscribed, so in the second skepticism is ruled out of court by all but the unconverted. In the current jargon, one could say that antonomasia, whether deployed negatively or positively, runs the signifier into the signified, rendering them indistinguishable from one another. Alternatively, the appellative word and the denominated thing have merged in a passion of similitudes.

In the same way, prior to his disengagement policy and his medical collapse, all one had to do was mention the name of Israeli Prime Minister Ariel Sharon and the automated analogies instantly crowded the emotional field on which the debate was pursued: “political dinosaur,” “Likud [5] hawk,” “war criminal.” Each term of abuse stood for Israel itself, supplemented by others like “Zionist entity” or “military occupier” springing from the inboard thesaurus of ideologically motivated synonyms.

The corollary was that if Sharon were only cashiered or even assassinated and his place taken by a Labor [6] dove, Israel might be welcomed or at least tolerated in the family of nations. The very real likelihood that previous Labor governments, by their tactic of appeasement and their naive belief in the credibility and good faith of the Palestinian negotiators, merely exacerbated the current situation in the Middle East is an inadmissible argument.

Of course, positive antonomasia comes harder for Israel than for the U.S. The problem here may have something to do with the plausible assumption that, in the words [7] of Jonathan Rosenblum, “Israel is the only country the majority of whose citizens are determined to confront evil rather than appease it.” This does not endear it to the West. We recall, too, that the pacifying names “Olmert [8]” and “Livni[9]” did little to redeem Israel in the eyes of the world. And with the recent election of Benjamin Netanyahu as prime minister, the negative personification tactic is in full swing again: “hard right-winger,” “expansionist,” “aggressor.” There is no recognition of the fact that Netanyahu signed the Wye Agreement [10] ceding land to the Palestinians; returned 80% of Hebron, the Jewish City of the Patriarchs, to the authority of Yasser Arafat; allowed Sheikh Ahmed Yassin, the spiritual leader of Hamas, to establish himself in Gaza; and has endorsed the original “two-state” road map. Such facts cannot break the magic circle of incantatory substitutions and have no bearing on the judgments of a barratrous symposium. For bad Bibi [11] is Israel.

What really happened in both the American and Israeli instances is that rational inquiry and responsible thought were (and still are) short-circuited, and that otherwise intelligent people surrendered their mental faculties to an involuntary and reflex-dominated organ of response whose instrumental mode of function is analogous to the operations of libidinal appetite. When a match is arranged between a term that seeks its conceptual mate and an idea that already awaits its verbal suitor, what is becomes what you want it to be. Such transactions smack of conjugal provisions where distance is abolished by a predetermined intimacy, as in arranged marriages — not the best recipe for genuine understanding.

As a result, disinterested analysis and the free exchange of ideas are no longer even remotely conceivable in an intellectual forum governed by antonomastic rigidities, which is only a kind of psychic concupiscence, a pressing need to satisfy the lust for instant correlations and spare us the burden of thinking. So to have said one is voting for “Bush” or approved of the pre-disengagement policies of “Sharon” inevitably exposed one to either incredulity or derision for neglecting self-evident “truths.” Similarly, to critique Obama or his policies leads to one being dismissed [12] as a clown, a madman, a racist, a purveyor of smears, along with a batch of similar expletives, for, as we have seen, positive antonomasia has identified the current president as an exalted figure who can do no wrong.

That these “truths” are the product of a set of irrational concomitants, a frozen nexus of words and beliefs, escapes our notice. A tight coil of terminological equivalents rooted in thymos, in the diaphragm — or, as I have suggested, even lower down — supplants the flexible and temporal process of ongoing query, research, and communication. What’s more, items marshaled in argument are often generated by the rumor mill and are therefore products of invention or fabrication. Or they are frequently presented not only out of frame but locked inside an end-stopped context, with no awareness of the developing skein of events or the entourage of attendant facts.

Thus, a European poll found Vladimir Putin, a dictator in all but name, whose policies involve selling arms to the genocidal Sudanese government, offering diplomatic support and materiel to a nuclearizing Iran, and siphoning off billions of dollars in the Iraqi oil-for-food scandal, to be more trustworthy than Dubya. Similarly, a “gentler” Ariel Sharon pursuing disengagement did poorly when compared to his Palestinian negotiating partner, President Mahmoud Abbas, despite the latter’s dismal record in the past, his doctoral thesis denying the Holocaust, his forty years as Arafat’s loyal deputy, and — using the word irhaab (terror) in his Arabic speeches to refer only to Israeli actions — his conciliation of his own terrorist outriders.

More to the point, the fact that (pre-Obama) America was and (post-Olmert) Israel is in the forefront of the fight against international terrorism is a matter of no account and cannot break the machine code of single-minded reprehension, above all among the constituency of the left. And so we are no longer in the historical continuum but lodged in the synchronic realm of absolute and eternal verities which are either “made up” or shaped to convenience, bowdlerized, truncated, and fixed by antonomastic language.

It is high time, as Robert Conquest argues in The Dragons of Expectation [13], taking his cue from George Orwell, that we begin “harpooning some word-whales” and proceed to “demystify key words used in political speech.” But the attempt at demystification runs up against the formidable sticking-power of antonomastic discourse which substitutes a name for a concept, obscuring the fissure between the two and thus allowing the concept to escape scrutiny. Used as such, antonomasia re-valences the particular, then swaps the particular for the general, and in the process turns off the brain. The reactions it elicits are almost glandular in their immediacy, provoking a sort of lexical prurience that is difficult to resist.

Put to political purpose, antonomasia works. It is the easy, mechanical way to consolidate a set of reciprocal designations, demonizing the innocent and angelizing the culpable. It is the enemy of thought and the friend of infatuation. Said differently, antonomasia is the semantic variant of the mail-order bride, ready for service. And it is the fastest way to reach millions. - - - - - - - - -end of David Solway's article - originally on Pajamas Media - - - - - -

Of course, I am much more critical of Pres George Bush II than Prof Solway is. Nevertheless, he provides an insight into one of the insidious psychological warfare tricks commonly used today. And, we stress, used by those who claim to support "peace," "justice," "human rights," and all the rest of that shopping list of supermarket goodies approved by all the right people.

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Sunday, November 08, 2009

Goldstone's Henchman, Colonel Travers, Is another Piece of Work

Anti-Zionism is the anti-imperialism of fools

Many lies resembling truth, Hesiod, Theogony

The moral flimsiness of the Goldstone Commission, also called the UNHRC Fact Finding [fact-finding, no less] Mission on the Gaza Conflict, shows up not only in the matrix from which it emerged, the UN human rights council, a corrupt body with an Orwellian name. It also shows up in its personnel, Richard Goldstone himself, Hina Jilani, Christine Chinkin, and Desmond Travers.

Goldstone's conduct as chief prosecutor of the ICTY [Yugoslav criminal tribunal] was meant to besmirch and incriminate Serbs as much as possible, going easy on the Croats and the Bosnian Muslims, while making sure that the major Western powers that had played a decisive role in instigating the Yugoslav conflict were not tarnished in the least. That's Goldstone.

Then there is Ms Professor Christine Chinkin who had notoriously made up her mind as to the identity of the guilty party before being appointed to the "fact-finding commission."

Then there is Ms Hina Jilani, a prominent supreme court lawyer in Pakistan. Her country, Pakistan, is an active and leading member of the Organization of the Islamic Conference, which initiated the whole project of a UNHRC investigating commission on the Gaza war, according to its secretary-general, Mr Ihsanoglu of Turkey. Pakistan and the OIC support the Cairo Declaration of Human Rights in Islam which vitiates the 1948 Universal Declaration of Human Rights, since it goes by Islamic law, shari`ah, which places non-Muslims in an inferior position to Muslims in which any rights that non-Muslims have are subject to the whim of the Muslims.

It is curious that both Jilani and Goldstone have complained about the abuse of human rights by Sudan in Darfur, but the people there are Muslim, although not Arab or Arabic-speaking like the rulers of Sudan in Khartoum. Further, although she and Goldstone both objected to Sudan's Darfur policy, the UNHRC which sent them off to investigate Israel's acts of self-defense denied any Sudanese wrongdoing, as did the Arab League and the Palestinian Authority. The Hamas is not a member of the Arab League but is closely allied with the Sudanese regime of Omar al-Bashir, which shares with Hamas the extremist Islamist ideology of the Egyptian Muslim Brotherhood. Does accepting a mission from a body that denied Sudanese genocidal practices in Darfur, a mission which turned out to be in moral defense of the genocidal Hamas, which also supports the genocidal Sudanese regime, indicate that either Jilani or Goldstone is truly committed to opposing genocide and mass murder in Sudan?

Be that as it may, we are left with Colonel Desmond Travers,
" a retired Colonel of the Irish Army. His last appointment was as Commandant of its Military College. In a career spanning over forty years, he served in various field command, staff and instructional appointments. He was a founder of two of the Armys' teaching and training institutions. He also served in command of troops and in key operational appointments with various UN and EU peace support missions. These were in the Middle-East (Cyprus, Lebanon) and in the Former Yugoslavia (Croatia and Bosnia and Herzegovina)." [here][emphasis added by Eliyahu]
Travers filled the slot of supposed military expert for the "fact-finding commission." Apparently, he also thinks that he is a qualified agronomist, hydrologist, or geologist. Consider his stated opinions in an interview with Harper's Magazine:
Col Travers continued by saying: "There are a number of other post-conflict issues in Gaza that need to be addressed. The land is dying. There are toxic deposits from all the munitions that have been dropped. There are serious issues with water-its depletion and its contamination. There is a high instance of nitrates in the soil that is especially dangerous to children. If these issues are not addressed, Gaza may not even be habitable by World Health Organization norms.". . . . [Harper's comments] another note here is the reference to toxic deposits from munitions.
Even if he is not a specialist in soil sciences, he certainly knows how to turn a purple phrase: "The land is dying" -- Here Travers shows or pretends to show his professional expertise in the scientific fields mentioned above. He must be either an agronomist or geologist or hydrologist. Otherwise he has no business pontificating in the areas that he touches on in this paragraph. Or is he just expressing prejudice against Israel, as one would expect of the ordinary UN official? Or is it careerist opportunism? Or both?

Travers mentions "toxic deposits" but --according to his words-- these are only from munitions "dropped", that is, by Israel. He says nothing about the large stores of Hamas munitions there, much of which were destroyed by Israel in the war and conceivably left toxic deposits in their destroyed state, although there have been a number of accidents which have occurred over the years to Hamas, Fatah, and Islamic Jihad personnel who were working with explosives, making bombs and rockets, laying mines, etc. As to water, most drinking water in Gaza is supplied by Israel through pipes. So the state of the ground water is separate from the quality of the water supplied by Israel. Likewise the quantity of potable water does not depend on the local ground water which is likely too salty for drinking and cooking due to Gaza's proximity to the sea, which is not Israel's fault. It is not likely that the soil is highly mixed with nitrates in most of the Gaza Strip but only where either too much fertilizer was used or where nitrate-based explosives or ammunition was used, but does this affect most of the land area of the Gaza Strip?? Can Travers prove that? Some of Travers' claims might be defended by saying that they are "mere hyperbole." But hyperbole is precisely one of the things that must be avoided by a fact-finding commission. Travers' claims sound plausible and professional but are not. Rather, analysis of the
claims indicates that he is being propagandistic, deceitful, and mendacious, as you would expect from a veteran of UN expeditions. Travers was a good partner for Goldstone.

- - - - - - - - - -
The secretary-general of the Organization of the Islamic Conference boasts that his body started off the whole process of the Judeophobic Goldstone Report:
"Ekmeleddin Ihsanoglu: Let me first start by completing the story of the history of the Goldstone report. What I would like to put on record is that the OIC was the initiator of this process." [see here]
On the corruption of the UN human rights council's predecessor, the human rights commission, consider how Christian Rocca put it, in an article for Il Foglio April 27, 2005.
At the UN, the Torturers Watch over Human Rights

China, Cuba, Sudan, Syria, Saudi Arabia and Libya have three things in common: they are ferocious dictatorships, they reject the concept of human rights, and they are enthusiastic members of the UN Human Rights Commission. In 2003, Libya even presided over its work... The regimes that torture and repress and keep their own subjects in chains are never missing from the Commission. Indeed, they are the ones that seek most tenaciously to get a seat at Geneva.... Even Kofi Annan's wise men have recognized that some countries go into the Commission "not to reinforce human rights but to protect themselves against criticism or to criticize other countries."

Our previous post on the Moral Incompetence of the UNHRC [here]
For a more comprehensive view of the UNHRC'S "fact-finding commission report," see the Understanding the Goldstone Report blog [here]

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