October 31, 2009

Réalité EU: Front group for the Washington based Israel Project?

A Spinwatch Investigation: by Tom Mills and David Miller, 30 October 2009 - Pulse Media

Realite EU - Not actually based in the EU at all

Spinwatch has uncovered evidence that an apparently London based organisation offering expertise on Iran to journalists and politicians is a covert propaganda operation run by a pro-Israel organisation in the United States.

The organisation, which is called Réalité-EU, has direct connections to the Israel Project, a hardline pro Israel organisation based in Washington DC. Both Réalité-EU and the Israel Project also appear to be connected to a Jewish organisation – B’nai B’rith International, which is also active in pro Israel campaigning

Réalité-EU was at one time linked to the former Shadow Security Minister Patrick Mercer, raising further concerns about the Conservative MP’s links to individuals and groups involved in exaggerating and even fabricating domestic and international threats for personal and political ends. These activities have previously been reported by Spinwatch as well as other sources.

Réalité-EU has claimed to be based at offices in London, but e-mails received from the organisation were sent from a mail server registered to the Washington offices of B’nai B’rith International.[1] An expert from Réalité-EU who spoke to Spinwatch denied ‘any connection whatsoever’ with B’nai B’rith

Asked whether Réalité-EU receives any funding or direct support from the pro-Israel pressure group, the expert replied, ‘Definitely not,’ but added, ‘I’m not at all involved in any development [i.e. funding] questions so I really don’t know exactly who the individuals are and where they come from.’[2]

Spinwatch’s questions about the backers of Réalité-EU were then referred to the group’s Communication Associate Gerlinde Gerber. She subsequently sent an e-mail stating that Réalité-EU receives funds from ‘different individuals from all over the world,’ who ‘are especially concerned about the growing threat of extremism in Europe and the Middle East.’[3]

When Ms Gerber was confronted with evidence directly linking Réalité-EU with B’nai B’rith she said that the organisation rents ‘services and space on their server for cost saving reasons,’ but that it had no ‘ideological or other connection to Bnai Brith’. She also stated that the expert Spinwatch had spoken to had no knowledge of this arrangement.[4]

However, Spinwatch has discovered that the London phone number for Réalité-EU redirected to a voicemail at the offices of The Israel Project in Washington. Ms Gerber did not reply to further questions about Réalité-EU’s relationship with The Israel Project or to a query as to where Réalité-EU is registered given that there is no trace of the organisation in the UK at Companies House or the Charity Commission.

B’nai B’rith International and The Israel Project were also asked to comment on whether they have any relationship with Réalité-EU but failed to respond.


B’nai B’rith International, the organisation presumed to be behind Réalité-EU, is one of a number of well funded organisations which lobby in support of Israel.[5] It was not originally a Zionist organisation and in its early years was officially neutral on the issue. It was set up in New York over a hundred years before the establishment of the State of Israel and was originally focused on providing welfare to newly arriving Jewish immigrants.

In 1913 it founded the Anti-Defamation League of B’nai B’rith[6] to record incidents of anti-semitism and campaign for greater protection for Jewish people. The League subsequently became independent of its parent organisation and, now known simply as the Anti-Defamation League or ADL, it has become notorious for its campaigns of harassment against critics of Israel. Amongst its targets was Noam Chomsky, who has noted ‘They try to label any criticism as anti-Semitic… in the last 40 years it’s become a Stalinist-style organization dedicated to supporting anything Israel does and to destroying all opposition to Israeli policies.’[7]

In addition ADL has been repeatedly accused of broadening its activities from defending against what it claims is ‘anti-semitism’ to actually spying on the left, including allegedly working with the South African apartheid regime, spying on anti-apartheid groups, a wide range of left and human rights organisations and even on HIV/AIDS activsts.[8]

ADL and the Israel Project are ideologically aligned but are also linked by personnel. For example Laura Kam, a ‘senior adviser’ for the Israel Project worked for seventeen years as co-director of ADL’s Israel office.[9] Hamodie Abu Nadda an ‘Arabic associate’ at the Israel Project also worked for ADL. The Israel Project also works with ADL, for example, as members of the Israel on Campus Coalition.[10]

Like the ADL, B’nai B’rith has also become a passionate advocate for Israel. Its website boasts of an ‘unrivalled record of service and commitment to the Jewish state.’ [11] This record has included using its presence at the UN and other international bodies to lobby against criticism of Israel, as well as the provision of material assistance to the Israel Defence Forces.[12]

During Israel’s latest attack on Gaza – described by one Israeli commentator as ‘a massive and unfettered assault, with no proportion to the amount of casualties’[13] – B’nai B’rith’s President visited Israel as part of a ‘solidarity mission’.[14] When Israel subsequently came under intense criticism for violations of human rights and international humanitarian law during its assault, B’nai B’rith, despite its history as a humanitarian organisation, jumped to Israel’s defence.

A UN Fact Finding Mission recently released a report criticising Israel for human rights violations and war crimes (as well as critising Hamas for indiscriminate rocket fire into Israel). B’nai B’rith dismissed the report as ‘one-sided’ complaining that it paid ‘scant attention to Hamas’ cynical use of human shields and placement of munitions among the civilian population’.[15]

In fact an entire chapter of the report addressed allegations such as these, but the mission had found no evidence to support the claims. They did however uncover evidence that the IDF had used Palestinian civilians as human shields during its assault.[16]

B’nai B’rith has branches all over the world including in Britain, but its head offices are based at 2020 K Street in Washington D.C.[17] K Street is famous for housing some of the world’s most powerful lobby groups and think-tanks. Other organisations based at number 2020 K Street include the American Association of Jewish Lawyers and Jurists, the NCSJ (formerly the National Conference on Soviet Jewry) and The Israel Project, which is located on the seventh floor along with B’nai B’rith. The Israel Project was founded in 2002, the same year B’nai B’rith International moved into its K Street office and also shares a mail server with B’nai B’rith.[18]

The Israel Project

As its name suggests, The Israel Project also shares B’nai B’rith’s unwavering ‘commitment to the Jewish state’. Whilst B’nai B’rith still supports religious and social programmes, The Israel Project is exclusively committed to political advocacy. In its 2004/05 tax returns it reported spending $787,038 on polling research and over $1.3 million on public relations; the stated goal of which was to ‘improve US understanding of the vital nature of a strong relationship between Israel and other counties around the world, primarily the US’.[19] A year later its accounts start to report the use of ‘Strategic Communications’.[20]

Originally a term used by the military, Strategic Communications refers to carefully researched and selectively targeted propaganda. The Israel Project states in its accounts that its Strategic Communications involves using ‘sophisticated public opinion research to identify messages, themes and visuals that will bring support to key [Israeli] policies,’ and that it, ‘has trained thousands of influential policy leaders, opinion elites and spokespeople to help strengthen Israel’s image in international media.’[21]

Over the course of the following three years, The Israel Project spent over $2.7 million on ‘Strategic Communications’ and a further $9.8 million on ‘public relations’.[22] It has retained a number of political communications and media companies which conduct telephone polling, run focus groups, and design and place television adverts. Its three main communications consultants are Greeberg Quinlan Rosner Research, Public Opinion Strategies and Luntz, Maslansky Strategic Research.

Greeberg Quinlan Rosner calls itself ‘the world’s premium research and strategic consulting firm’. Its political clients are mostly Democratcs and other centrist parties around the world, and the firm worked for the Labour Party on its three general elections under Tony Blair.[23] Its clients also include some of the world’s most powerful corporations such as Boeing, BP, Coca-Cola and General Motors.[24]

Public Opinion Strategies on the other hand is a Republican polling firm.[25] It also represents corporate lobby groups like the United States Chamber of Commerce and The National Association of Manufacturers.[26]

Luntz, Maslansky Strategic Research, perhaps the most significant of the three in terms of devising propaganda, offers clients ‘game-changing messaging solutions’ which it claims are able to ‘generate powerful results in the corporate world’.[27] Its clients also include Boeing, Coca-Cola and General Motors, along with a host of others including American Express, Bear Sterns, Disney, General Electric, Lockheed Martin, McDonalds and Merrill Lynch.

Assisted by these communications companies, The Israel Project produces documents advising lobbyists and campaigners on their use of language and their framing of arguments. One such document, leaked to the pro-Palestinian group Electronic Intifada in 2003, described in detail how advocates could ‘integrate and leverage history and communication for the benefit of Israel’.[28]

The group’s political advocacy is unabashedly partisan and militaristic. Despite its claim to be working for ‘security and peace,’ Rightweb notes that it, ‘Advocates a number of positions similar to other hardline and neoconservative groups. It supports the controversial wall along the West Bank, advocates a hardline against Iran, and actively promotes the work of hawkish think tanks and writers.’[29]

In recent years The Israrel Project’s carefully crafted multi-million dollar propaganda operation has focused heavily on Iran. In November 2007, it commissioned a focus group to assess public perceptions of the country. According to one participant: ‘The whole basis of the whole thing was, “we’re going to go into Iran and what do we have to do to get you guys to along with it?”’[30]

As the focus group apparently showed, the public were sceptical of the need for more war. This finding has been confirmed more recently in The Israel Project’s 2009 Global Language Dictionary which noted that to the ‘American Left and Center-left’ and to Europeans in general, ‘Warnings about Iran sound uncomfortably too much like President Bush and his call for preemption in Iraq.’[31]

The numerous references in that document to European opinion suggests how Réalité-EU might fit into a broader propaganda strategy. Winning over important sections of European opinion is not only useful in itself, it also helps to win over America opinion. Liberals in the US will be more likely to support aggression if it receives some degree of international support, particularly from America’s close allies.

As The Israel Project notes in its 2009 Global Language Dictionary: ‘With the advent of the new administration, Americans and the world are weary of unilateral, America-will-go-it-alone approaches. They are eager to be on the same team as other democratic nations again.’ This pressing need for international legitimacy explains what groups like B’nai B’rith and The Israel Project have to gain from backing an organisation like Réalité-EU.

Similar media strategies

Réalité-EU is directly linked to The Israel Project in that its London phone number redirects to The Israel Project and both organisations have used the B’nai B’rith mail server. Both their websites offer what they call ‘Backgrounders’ and ‘Expert Sources’ and they seem to be the only two websites which use both terms.

The Israel Project’s European Affairs Web Specialist states that part of her job is identifying European experts on Iran.[32] However, none of The Israel Project’s experts appear to be Europeans. Réalité-EU on the other hand directs journalists to eight ‘Expert Sources’, all of whom are European; and apparently independent. Another notable feature is that The Israel Project’s European affairs associate states that he organises press events in Berlin, Vienna, Paris, London and Brussels,[33] all cities where Réalité-EU experts have been based.[34]

Whether the eight Réalité-EU experts are themselves aware of the Réalité-EU’s connection with The Israel Project and/or B’nai B’rith is not clear, but even if ignorant of it they could probably be relied upon to deliver the right message.

One of the ‘experts’, a French academic and risk consultant called Frédéric Encel,[35] gave what was described as an ‘intensely emotional’ speech at a fundraising event in March this year in which he made reference to the recent bombing of Gaza. Rather than condemning the massacres, Encel argued that, ‘The Hamas party’s way of making things worse to further their own ends has obliged Israel to use its force.’ He added that the IDF conducting its attacks whilst ‘maintaining a control that is rarely seen in other armies.’[36]

Encel’s political views are typical of neoconservatives and the pro-war liberals. He sees himself as defending a Western liberal tradition against a sinister alliance of Islamists and leftists. He says on his official website that he is in favour of a ‘fierce defence of republican values,’ which he considers to be under attack by what he labels as totalitarianism, fascism, radical Islam and Stalinism.[37]

Another of Réalité-EU’s experts, Matthias Küntzel,[38] is a German author and a political scientist best known for his belief that movements like Hamas, Hezbollah, and of course the Islamic Republic of Iran, are essentially anti-Semitic, fascistic movements comparable with the Third Reich.

Like many neoconservatives, Küntzel claims to have a background on the liberal left; which he now criticises for being unable to provide ‘an even halfway adequate response to the continuing impact of the crimes against the Jews’.[39] Küntzel’s book Jihad and Jew-Hatred was published in English in 2007 and received positive reviews in the neoconservative Weekly Standard and the right-wing Washington Times.[40]

Réalité-EU’s most prominent figure is probably the terrorism expert Claude Moniquet, who is also one of six speakers listed on the ‘Speakers Bureau’ of B’nai B’rith Europe.[41] Moniquet heads a right-wing Brussels based think-tank called the European Strategic Intelligence and Security Center, an organisation which says it ‘supports the strengthening of the trans-Atlantic ties and the democracies in their struggle against terrorism and other threats.’[42] Moniquet worked for 20 years as a journalist, but sees no shame in admitting that throughout that time he also served as a ‘field operative’ for the French foreign intelligence.[43]

A shadowy network

Although Réalité-EU is run by Europeans and backed by Americans, its origins at least appear to be British. At the time of its launch, Réalité-EU was closely affiliated with another organisation called International Media Intelligence Analysis (IMIA).[44] IMIA was set up by a British neoconservative called Simon Barrett,[45] who authored the inaugural Réalité-EU press release and was for a time one of its ‘experts’[46] but who has since left the group.[47] At the time of Réalité-EU’s launch an introductory press release written by Barrett stated that Réalité EU would ‘include some of the previous works of IMIA but be greatly expanded.[48]

Barrett, who is now 34, claims to have worked as an advisor to Patrick Mercer MP when he was the Conservative Party Shadow Homeland Security Minister.[49] Mercer, who now chairs the the House of Commons Sub-Committee on Counter-Terrorism, was asked by Spinwatch to confirm Barrett’s advisory role. His office replied that he may have ‘spoken to Simon Barrett’ but he ‘could not be described as an advisor.’[50]

Whatever his exact relationship with Barrett, Mercer has long been associated with the wilder fringes of the anti-terrorism world. It would appear however that his office is now attempting to distance him his former associates. Another individual who has claimed to have acted as an advisor to Mercer is Dominic Wightman, who like Barrett now works in think-tanks on the far right of British politics.

Spinwatch recently revealed that Wightman – or as he alleges a former colleague who hacked into his email – attempted to fabricate a bogus terrorism plot. An American working in Iraq received an email from Wightman requested that his colleague translate some English text into Arabic and post it on a ‘jihadinoticeboard’.

The text was written as if by someone planning to plant a bomb in an elderly woman’s wheeled-basket and explode it in a supermarket.[51] Wightman is now suspected of involvement in a hate campaign against the blogger Tim Ireland which has including repeated threats of violence and the publishing of his home address on the internet.[52]

Wightman denies any involvement with the campaign, which is led by a group of online vigilantes calling themselves the Cheerleaders, but as the blogger Richard Bartholomew has noted the timing and content of online attack pieces posted by Wightman and the Cheerleaders strongly suggests coordination.[53]

Tim Ireland, the main target of these attacks, had exposed another fake terror threat fabricated by Wightman’s former colleague Glen Jenvey, and Wightman now considers Ireland to a part of an ‘Islamist-Leftist compact’ or ‘Black Red Alliance’.[54]

After weeks of scrutiny by bloggers, Glen Jenvey admitted fabricating a terror threat supposedly targeting Alan Sugar which appeared on the front page of the Sun in January. He too enjoyed a working relationship with Patrick Mercer, which as Tim Ireland has noted, continued for two months after Ireland first produced evidence calling into questioning the Sun’s story.

In March this year one of Mercer’s staff sent an e-mail to a journalist at The People stating: ‘I have been in touch with Mr Jenvey about a number of things but most of all the following, which in my view would combine well to make a very good Sunday story.’[55]

Although there is no evidence that Réalité-EU’s Simon Barrett also fabricated terror plots, early in his career as a terrorism and Middle East expert he commented on similar scare stories in the tabloid press. In one such article the Sunday Express claimed that there was a risk that Muslim women in Europe and North America ‘could be planning to use fake pregnancies’ to hide explosives.

The source for the story was the US based Northeast Intelligence Network, a group of former corporate security figures who have made it their mission to ‘educate’ the American public as to ‘the true nature of the terrorist threats’. The group claimed to have discovered an image of a ‘strap on womb’ on an ‘extremistIslamist website’, but would not reveal where the images were found.[56]

Barrett was quoted by the Sunday Express as saying that ‘terrorists are effectively using our politically correct laws as their cover’. He made a point of linking the scare story to the Palestinians saying: ‘This is unfortunately not in the realms of fantasy as terrorist recruiters within the Palestinian terrorist organisations have exploited young vulnerable women in the past to carry out suicide missions with devastating consequences.[57]

In an earlier article the Sunday Express covered the story of a 19 year old Iraqi man with Down’s Syndrome who was reported to have been used unwittingly as a suicide bomber. Patrick Mercer commented that: ‘This shows us exactly the sort of murderous scum with whom we are dealing.’ Barrett added: ‘This is not just happening with Iraqis. Palestinian children have also been educated with hatred to become suicide bombers.’[58] The article referred to Barrett as ‘a spokesman for Terror Aware, a group that monitors the Middle East media’.

Terror Aware was one of a number of alarmist organisations Barrett was involved in prior to launchingRéalité-EU. Like one of his other early projects, it appears to be linked to the British record producer Trevor Horn and his wife Jill Sinclair – the owners of SARM Studios. Terror Aware was registered to the address of the SARM Workshop in North-West London. Jill Sinclair, who went into a comma in 2007 after a tragic domestic accident, is described as having been a very vocal supporter of Israel.[59] In 2008 Trevor Horn helped to produce a record called Israel — Home of Hope to coincide with Israel’s 60th anniversary.[60]

Press references to Simon Barrett’s Terror Aware disappeared after a few months, with Barrett instead being referred to as the director of the International Coalition Against Terror. By early 2006 the short livedInternational Coalition Against Terror was superseded by International Media Intelligence Analysis (IMIA), which was co owned by Barrett and Jill Sinclair. Like Terror Aware Ltd, IMIA was registered to a business address of SARM Studios, this time at its studio in Notting Hill. There is no evidence to connect Sinclair toRéalité-EU, though in its first year of operations, it gave its contact address as a P.O. Box in the Notting Hill area of London.[61]

IMIA was referred to in some press articles as a London based think-tank, but for the most part it appears to have operated as an e-newsletter service run solely by Barrett. It did however co-host an event in the House of Commons with the Euro-sceptic think-tank Open Europe.[62]

Open Europe has itself received funding from American neoconservatives via the Policy Forum on International Security Affairs, a group headed by Devon Gaffney Cross, a former director of the powerful neoconservative group the Project for the New American Century. Her brother Frank Gaffney was a speaker at an Israel Project press conference in Washington in July 2007 organised to publicise the supposed ‘Iranian threat’.[63]

Open Europe and IMIA’s ‘parliamentary briefing’ that May was billed ‘Iran, Britain and Europe: Post hostage crisis, what can we expect next?’ It was attended by Patrick Mercer and Mark Fitzpatrick of the prestigious International Institute for Strategic Studies[64] among others.[65] Réalité-EU’s Claude Moniquet also spoke.[66]

Moniquet told the audience that his think-tank had evidence that ‘something is under preparation in Europe,’ and that, ‘Iranian intelligence is working extremely hard to prepare its people and to prepare actions.’ They would he claimed target ‘British citizens on the streets of London, just as they kill British soldiers in the south of Iraq.’[67]

Later that year the United States National Intelligence Estimate concluded that, contrary to the widespread claims, Iran was not developing a nuclear weapons programme. Réalité-EU responded with an Insight entitled, ‘Can U.S. Intelligence be Trusted on Iran?’, which once again conflated the issues of civilian nuclear power and nuclear weapons.[68]

Though Réalité-EU and similar organisatoins promoting hostility against Iran were apparently unconvinced and undeterred, the National Intelligence Estimate seemed for some time to have abated the march to war. Recently however the frequency and tone of official statements and media reports in Britain and the United States have once again become a cause for grave concern. Those who are unwilling to forget what has happened to the people of Iraq, and the lies and distortions on which that war was based, cannot help but note worrying parallels with the current political climate.

The UK media critics David Edwards and David Cromwell write: ‘To us it seems like yesterday – the sense of madness is fresh in our minds. When Obama acts the stern father in demanding: “Iran must comply with United Nations resolutions,” he is repeating, with the alteration of but a single letter, the same sentence in the same tone used by George Bush and Tony Blair on Iraq.’[69]

Last month Réalité-EU’s Matthias Küntzel wrote a piece in the Wall Street Journal entitled, ‘Iran Has No Right to Nuclear Technology’.[70] Although the Nuclear Proliferation Treaty states that signatories have ‘the inalienable right’ to ‘develop research, production and use of nuclear energy for peaceful purposes’, Küntzel argued that this right cannot apply to Iran which although it has signed up to the NPT, ‘can by definition not be considered a bona fide signatory’.

To give Iran the same rights afforded other states under the treaty was according to Küntzel ‘not only politically absurd but also wrong from a purely legal point of view’. This remarkable claim was justified with reference to a comment on world Islamic revolution made by Ayatollah Khomeini around 30 years ago, and to a passage of the Qur’an quoted in Article 151 of Iran’s constitution. Küntzel thus argued that Iran was politically and constutionally committed to waging war and overturning the international order. That being the case Küntzel conclude: ‘The time for “dialogue as usual” is over’.

– Notes –

[1] Réalité-EU, email to Tom Mills, 14 July 2009 20:34; Gerlinde Gerber, Email to Tom Mills, 11 September 2009 16:48. Both emails were sent from the IP address, the IP number for mail.bnaibrith.org.

[2] Phone interview, 10 September 2009

[3] Gerlinde Gerber, Email to Tom Mills, 11 September 2009 16:48

[4] Gerlinde Gerber, Email to Tom Mills, 29 October 2009 14:53

[5] Spinprofiles, Israel Lobby Portal

[6] Spinprofiles, Anti-Defamation League

[7]Committee to Defend Academic Freedom at UCSB ‘Scholars condemn attack on academic freedom at UC-Santa Barbara’ 28 April 2009

[8] Jeffrey Blankfort, Anne Poirier and Steve Zeltzer, ‘The ADL Spying Case Is Over, But The Struggle Continues’, Counterpunch, 25 February 2002; Robert I. Friedman, The Enemy Within, The Village Voice, 11 May 1993, Vol. XXXVIII No. 19. http://web.archive.org/web/20050301171016/http://www.etext.org/Politics/Conspiracy/LWB/Misc/THEENEMY.TXT; Abdeen Jabara, (1993) ‘The Anti-Defamation League: Civil Rights and Wrongs‘, ”Covert Action”, No. 45, Summer;

[9] The Israel Project Laura Kam, Senior Advisor, http://www.theisraelproject.org/site/c.hsJPK0PIJpH/b.689731/k.A173/Key_TIP_Staff.htm#Laura_Kam

[10] Israel on Campus Coalition ‘Members: ADL’ http://www.israelcc.org/members/adl.htm

[11] B’nai B’rith International, ‘B’nai B’rith and Israel’ http://www.bnaibrith.org/165/BBI_and_Israel.cfm

[12] Ibid.

[13] Paul Wood, ‘Analysis: Operation Miscast Lead?’, BBC News Online, 13 March 2009 http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/world/middle_east/7940624.stm

[14] ‘B’nai B’rith International Leaders on Solidarity Mission to Israel’, Targeted News Service, 12 January 2009

[15] ‘Goldstone Report Presents One-Sided and Incomplete Information’, Targeted News Service, 15 September 2009

[16] Human Rights Council, Report of the United Nations Fact Finding Mission on the Gaza Conflict, A/HRC/12/48, 15 September 2009; see Chapters VIII and XIV http://www2.ohchr.org/english/bodies/hrcouncil/specialsession/9/docs/UNFFMGC_Report.pdf

[17] Michael Vasquez, ‘A New Address for B’nai B’rith’, Washington Post, 15 June 2002

[18] See Robtex record for mail.bnaibrith.org http://www.robtex.com/dns/mail.bnaibrith.org.html#shared

[19] The Israel Project, Form 990 (2004), p.2

[20] The Israel Project, Form 990 (2005), p.3

[21] Ibid.

[22] The Israel Project, Form 990 (2005), p.3; Form 990 (2006), p.3; Form 990 (2007), p.3

[23] Greeberg Quinlan Rosner Research, International Campaigns http://www.greenbergresearch.com/index.php?ID=109

[24] Greeberg Quinlan Rosner Research, Corporations http://www.greenbergresearch.com/index.php?ID=111

[25] Laura Rozen, ‘Focus Grouping War with Iran’, Mother Jones, 19 November 2007 http://www.motherjones.com/politics/2007/11/focus-grouping-war-iran

[26] Public Opinion Strategies, Public Affairs Client List http://www.pos.org/research/pubclients.asp

[27] Luntz, Maslansky Strategic Research, What We Do http://www.luntz.com/what_we_do.html

[28] Wexner Analysis: Israeli Communication Priorities 2003 http://electronicintifada.net/artman2/uploads/1/luntzwexneranalysis.pdf

[29] Rightweb, The Israel Project, 26 July 2007 http://www.rightweb.irc-online.org/profile/The_Israel_Project

[30] Laura Rozen, ‘Focus Grouping War with Iran’, Mother Jones, 19 November 2007 http://www.motherjones.com/politics/2007/11/focus-grouping-war-iran

[31] The Israel Project’s 2009 Global Language Dictionary, Newsweek, 9 July 2009


[32] The Israel Project, Julie Hazan http://www.theisraelproject.org/site/pp.aspx?c=hsJPK0PIJpH&b=689731&printmode=1#JulieHazan [Accessed 30 October 2009]

[33] The Israel Project, Christoph Heil, http://www.theisraelproject.org/site/pp.aspx?c=hsJPK0PIJpH&b=689731&printmode=1#Christoph [Accessed 30 October 2009]

[34] Gerlinde Gerber is from Berlin, Diana Gregor lives in Vienna, Frédéric Encel in Paris, Simon Barrett in London and Claude Moniquet in Brussels.

[35] Neocon Europe, Frédéric Encel http://neoconeurope.eu/Fr%C3%A9d%C3%A9ric_Encel

[36] Lucie Optyker and Laurence Borot, ‘Traditional Fundraising Dinner Organized by the Paris Woman’s Division’, Keren Hayesod – United Israel Appeal, 26 March 2009, accessed 1 October 2009 http://www.kh-uia.org.il/EN/Missions-Events/worldwide-Events/latest/Pages/Traditional_Fundraising_Dinner_Organized_By_The_Paris_Womans_Division.aspx

[37] Frédéric Encel Official Website, accessed 12 September 2009.http://www.fredericencel.org/ The original text in French reads: ‘Ainsi, mon engagement actif en faveur d’une âpre défense des valeurs républicaines (à commencer par la laïcité et l’égalité de la femme), accompagne sans l’entraver ni la biaiser mon expertise géopolitique ; le combat contre les totalitarismes, du fascisme à l’islamisme radical en passant par le stalinisme, ne souffre pas de répit…’

[38] Neocon Europe, Matthias Küntzel http://neoconeurope.eu/Matthias_K%C3%BCntzel

[39] Alan Johnson, ‘Islamism, Antisemitism, and the political left. A Democratiya Interview with Matthias Küntzel’, Democratiya no. 13, 25 May 2008 http://www.matthiaskuentzel.de/contents/islamism-antisemitism-and-the-political-left

[40] Stephen Schwartz, ‘The Third Jihad: When radical Muslims distort Islam’, Weekly Standard, Volume 013, Issue 31, 28 April 2008 http://www.weeklystandard.com/Content/Public/Articles/000%5C000%5C014%5C999uxzyj.asp; Martin Rubin, ‘When Nazis and Islamic extremists bonded’, Washington Times, 24 February 2008 http://www.washingtontimes.com/news/2008/feb/24/when-nazis-and-islamic-extremists-bonded/

[41] B’nai B’rith Europe, Speakers Bureau [Accessed 1 October 2009] http://www.bnaibritheurope.org/bbe/content/blogcategory/63/112/lang,en/

[42] European Strategic Intelligence and Security Center, ‘About Us’, accessed 1 October 2009 http://www.esisc.org/esisc.php

[43] see contributor’s note in Claude Moniquet, ‘American Intelligence’, Wall Street Journal, 13 December 2007 and Claude Moniquet’s CV on the website of the B’nai B’rith Europe which states that he spent ‘twenty years in journalism,’ and that ‘In the same twenty years, I was under contract for a specialized branch of the French Defense Ministry, working on security issues and counter terrorism.’ http://www.bnaibritheurope.org/bbe/content/view/547/112/lang,en_GB/; http://online.wsj.com/article/SB119749650426324631.html

[44] Neocon Europe, International Media Intelligence Analysis http://neoconeurope.eu/International_Media_Intelligence_Analysis

[45] Neocon Europe, Simon Barrett, http://neoconeurope.eu/Simon_Barrett

[46] Internet Archive, REALITE-EU – Expert Sources, 23 January 2007 http://web.archive.org/web/20070506055954/www.realite-eu.org/site/c.9dJBLLNkGiF/b.2268653/k.AA99/Expert_Sources.htm

[47] Réalité-EU, email to Tom Mills, 14 July 2009 20:34

[48] Réalité-EU Press Release, ‘Réalité: The real story’ http://neoconeurope.eu/images/2/29/Realite_EU_Screenscrab.JPG

[49] Internet Archive, REALITE-EU – Expert Sources, 23 January 2007 http://web.archive.org/web/20070506055954/www.realite-eu.org/site/c.9dJBLLNkGiF/b.2268653/k.AA99/Expert

[50] Parliamentary Assistant to Patrick Mercer, email to Tom Mills, 15 September 2009 15:24

[51] Tom Mills and David Miller, ‘The British amateur terror trackers: A case study in dubious politics’, Spinwatch, 26 August 2009 http://www.spinwatch.org.uk/-articles-by-category-mainmenu-8/74-terror-spin/5315-the-british-amateur-terror-trackers-a-case-study-in-dubious-politics

[52] Tim Ireland, ‘Dominic Wightman: follow the leader’, Bloggerheads, 1 October 2009 http://www.bloggerheads.com/archives/2009/10/dominic_wightma.asp; Richard Bartholomew, ‘Tim Ireland Threatened with Violence’, Notes on Religion, 30 September 2009 http://barthsnotes.wordpress.com/2009/09/30/tim-ireland-threatened-with-violence/

[53] Richard Bartholomew, ‘Tim Ireland Threatened with Violence’, Bartholomew’s Notes on Religion, 30 September 2009 http://barthsnotes.wordpress.com/2009/09/30/tim-ireland-threatened-with-violence/

[54] Dominic Whiteman, ‘A Message to the Cheerleaders’, Westminster Journal, 30 September 2009 http://westminsterjournal.com/content/view/231/1/

[55] Tim Ireland, ‘Patrick Mercer has some explaining to do’, Bloggerheads, 23 September 2009 http://www.bloggerheads.com/archives/2009/09/patrick_mercer_boom.asp

[56] Julia Hartley-Brewer, ‘ALERT FOR WOMEN BOMBERS WHO FAKE PREGNANCY’, Sunday Express, 28 August 2005

[57] Ibid.

[58] Tim Shipman, ‘Scum! Iraq bombers use Down’s Syndrome victim’, Sunday Express, 6 February 2005

[59] ‘An ‘anthem’ for Israel from the makers of ‘Band Aid’’, Jerusalem Post, 5 April 2008 http://www.jpost.com/servlet/Satellite?cid=1207238156453&pagename=JPArticle%2FShowFull

[60] Candice Krieger, ‘Chief joins Trevor Horn for a kosher Live Aid’, Jewish Chronicle, 18 April 2008 http://www.thejc.com/arts/music/chief-joins-trevor-horn-a-kosher-live-aid

[61] see contact details in Rightweb, ‘Réalité EU’, 31 October 2007 http://www.rightweb.irc-online.org/profile/Ralit_EU

[62] Neocon Europe, Open Europe http://neoconeurope.eu/Open_Europe

[63] Rightweb, ‘Réalité EU’, 31 October 2007 http://www.rightweb.irc-online.org/profile/Ralit_EU

[64] Spinprofiles, International Institute for Strategic Studies http://www.spinprofiles.org/index.php/International_Institute_for_Strategic_Studies

[65] Open Europe Events, accessed 11 September 2009 http://www.openeurope.org.uk/events/

[66] Open Europe Events, accessed 11 September 2009 http://www.openeurope.org.uk/events/

[67] ‘Iran Drawing Up Plans to Strike European Nuclear Sites, Analyst Says’, Associated Press,

22 May 2007 http://www.foxnews.com/story/0,2933,274725,00.html

[68] Réalité-EU Insight: Can U.S. Intelligence be Trusted on Iran?, 24 September 2007 http://www.realite-eu.org/site/apps/nlnet/content3.aspx?c=9dJBLLNkGiF&b=2300349&ct=3957963

[69] ‘Iran – The War Dance’, Medialens, 1 October 2009 http://www.medialens.org/alerts/09/091001_iran_the_war.php

[70] Matthias Küntzel, ‘Iran Has No Right to Nuclear Technology’, Wall Street Journal, 29 September 2009 http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424052748704471504574442561260582286.html

Palestinian Child Prisoners - Video and UK Speaking Tour

[RAMALLAH, 31 October 2009] – On Monday, 2 November 2009, DCI-Palestine will accompany Mohammad and his mother Somaya on a four-day speaking tour of the UK to highlight the plight of Palestinian child prisoners.

Mohammad, from the occupied West Bank, was 14 years old when he was detained by Israeli forces in February 2008 and accused of throwing stones at the Wall. Mohammad was beaten, interrogated in the absence of a lawyer, deceived into signing a confession, prosecuted in a military court and sentenced to four months imprisonment inside Israel. Whilst in prison, he received no education and no family visits.

Today, DCI-Palestine is launching a short film which tells the story of Mohammad and his experiences in a military court system which prosecutes around 700 children each year, some as young as 12. The most common offence these children are charged with is throwing stones.

Mohammad and Somaya will share their experiences with audiences across the UK at four public meetings in early November.

See flyer below for the full schedule.

View a video of Mohammad's story.

Read DCI-Palestine’s latest report on Palestinian child prisoners.

Report: 4,524 Palestinians detained by Israel since the start of this year

31/10/2009 - 10:59 AM

GAZA, (PIC)-- Researcher in prisoners’ affairs Abdelnasser Farwana reported Friday that he documented 4,524 Israeli arrests of Palestinian citizens since the start of 2009, 412 of them took place in October.

Farwana said that the West Bank and Jerusalem witnessed the kidnapping of 3,456 citizens, while 1,068 others were kidnapped in Gaza, mostly during the last war, noting that there were children, women, patients and elderly people among those who were kidnapped this year.

He also pointed out that the arrests declined in the Gaza Strip after the war, where 68 cases have been documented since the end of the war until end of October.

The researcher said that his current report is on the total number of arrests and not on the number of citizens who were arrested during this year.

In another context, the Palestinian center for human rights said in its weekly report that the Israeli occupation forces (IOF) wounded during the last week 41 Palestinian citizens in the West Bank, including five journalists, eight women and one child.

The report also underlined that the IOF troops carried out 25 incursions in the West Bank and one in the Gaza Strip, during which they kidnapped 47 Palestinians.

The report touched on the Israeli violations committed against Palestinian fishermen in Gaza and farmers in the West Bank as well as the policy of demolishing homes in occupied Jerusalem.

Fight for survival in the West Bank

By Phoebe Greenwood in Hebron, the West Bank

The Jaber family says clashes with the Israeli authorities are a regular occurrence

A major new road joining Jerusalem to Israeli settlements in Hebron bisects land owned by the Jaber family.

They have farmed these fields for 300 years. They once owned 60 dunums (60,000 square metres) but now have four (4,000 square metres) - the rest has been confiscated by Israeli settlers. The Jabers fight to farm on the land they have left.

As his family clashes with workers from Israel's water authority, employed to rip up the irrigation systems for their tomato plants, and the Israeli soldiers protecting them, Yosri Jaber, a school teacher, explains: "These clashes with the Israeli authorities are a regular thing; they happen every two to three months or so.

"The Israelis don't allow us to water our plants. We pay them four shekels ($1) for every cubic metre of water.

"We have a water regulator, which we share with the eight other houses to irrigate our plants and get water to our homes. We've paid for it but we can't use it."

Palestinians in many areas of the West Bank are not allowed to irrigate their land. Nor are they allowed electricity, to build water cisterns, or indeed, any new structures without a permit from the Israeli authorities.

Crops destroyed

These permits are difficult to come by. According to the Jabers, the Jewish settlers living on what was once their land get water for free; they don't need a permit to irrigate their crops.

Yosri says: 'the Israelis don't allow us
to water our plants'
During the clash on the tomato field, Jaber's 47-year-old sister-in-law, an asthmatic, is pushed roughly to the ground by one of the men she was trying to prevent from tearing up her field.

Her eight year-old daughter Lara is in tears as she watches her being stretchered away by paramedics through a still volatile crowd, many of whom are pushing, shouting and throwing mud.

The Israeli labourers not involved in the altercation continue their work, ripping up water pipes and destroying them immediately.

Jaber says: "We have 25 kids living in our household; they witness this violence every day. This is the tragedy we suffer."

Water supplies

Hebron, on the south eastern slopes of Palestine, near the border with Jordan, holds one of the largest underground water supplies in the West Bank.

According to new research published by Save the Children this week, Palestinian families living in high risk areas such as this are poorer, less protected and more vulnerable than anywhere else in the occupied Palestinian territory.

The numbers of Palestinians forced from their homes by Israeli policies in the West Bank and Gaza is on the rise, says the UK charity.

At least half of those living in what the United Nations identifies as "high risk" areas who spoke to the organisation said they have been forced from their homes at least once since 2000, the last major period of conflict between Israelis and Palestinians.

In the West Bank, most demolished homes are cleared to make way for the Separation Wall that Israel is building to divide Israeli and Palestinian land.

Or the properties are destroyed for "administrative reasons", such as not holding the correct Israeli permits.

Aside from these demolitions, lack of access to basics like water, sanitation and food is forcing vulnerable families from their homes in ever great numbers.

Accusations denied

Mark Regev, spokesperson for Binyamin Netanyahu, the Israeli prime minister, denies any further Palestinian homes are under threat from settlement expansion.

The Jaber's irrigation system was removed under the watch of Israeli troops
He says: "Israel is not building new settlements in the West Bank nor is it expanding existing settlements. There is no more expropriation of land for settlements and we have got rid of all illegal settlement buildings.

"We are aware of pirate activity by settlers in the West Bank and Israel is tackling illegal settlement activity by taking down any illegal settlement constructions.

"Those who break the law will face the full wrath of the law. There are dozens of cases of settlers in the courts currently who are being held to account for their illegal activity."

Regev could not explain why the Jaber's irrigation system was being removed under the watch of Israeli troops.

Atta Jaber, Lara's father, speaks about the difficulties his family face with barely contained fury.

He says: "The Israelis have demolished my home twice. We want peace but they need to stop building settlements on our land and stealing our property.

"I studied hotel management and speak five languages. I worked in a hotel in Israel for eight years but was stopped from working in Israel by the authorities. Now all I have to live off is our land, which I cultivate with my children.

"We aren't able to reach the market because of the Israeli restrictions on our movement so we sell our tomatoes right here by the side of the road. We have waited all year to harvest these tomatoes. This is how we support ourselves."

'Children traumatised'

Under international law, it is illegal for an occupying power to change the demographic situation of the territory they have occupied and yet Israeli settlers continue to arrive in the West Bank.

Their settlements have contributed to the displacement of tens of thousands of Palestinian families.

Salam Kanaan, Save the Children's country director in the occupied Palestinian territory, says: "Without a secure future, the lives of Palestinian children living in high risk areas like Hebron are blighted.

"Constant fear of upheaval, combined with a daily struggle for basics like food and water has left children depressed and traumatised. These children are in urgent need of help and protection."

Atta says his family is harassed everyday by settlers
Atta Jaber claims his family suffer daily harassment from the nearby settlers, he says: "They threaten my children all the time. They ride up on their horses every night and circle our home, threatening us."

The Jaber family insist they have reported this abuse to the Israeli police but see no change in the settlers' behaviour.

They have filed a legal case against the confiscation of their land, which has now reached the High Court, but have little hope it will be successful.

The High Court Judge in charge of their case, they claim, is a settler.

"What kind of life is this? No nation, no people can live like this. They want us to leave our land but whatever they do, we will never leave.

"Today's events will repeat themselves, as they do every day in the West Bank. We just have to survive, one way or another."

Phoebe Greenwood works for Save the Children UK, a global children's charity.


October 30, 2009

Norway University might boycott Israel

October 30, 2009

Haaretz daily reported on Friday that Norway's University of Trondheim may become the first university in the West to adopt an academic boycott of Israel, if a majority of its board votes in favor of the move at a meeting next month.


Three days prior to the November 12 vote by the board of the Norwegian University of Science and Technology (NTNU), the institution will host a lecture on Israel's alleged use of anti-Semitism as a political tool.

The lecture, by Prof. Moshe Zuckermann of Tel Aviv University, is part of a controversial six-session seminar on Israel that is comprised entirely of Norwegians and Israelis known for highly critical attitudes toward Israel. Prof. Morten Levin, an NTNU lecturer and member of the seminar's organizing committee, set up the series of lectures - which also featured Ilan Pappe and Stephen Walt - with Ann Rudinow Saetnan and Rune Skarstein. All have signed a call for an academic boycott of Israel.


Interview with Khaled Meshal

On the 17th of October this year, I interviewed Hamas leader Khaled Mashal in his offices in Damascus, Syria on a wide range of topics. I did the interview as part of a launch effort for a new political blog, The Palestine Note, which is releasing the interview today.


Ford wants 'made in China' engraved on Volvo

Press TV
October 28, 2009 16:00:41 GMT
Volvo S60

Ford Motor Co. reportedly says that China's largest independent carmaker Geely stands the highest chance of buying its envied European project Volvo.

"Ford believes Geely has the potential to be a responsible future owner of Volvo and to take the business forward, while preserving its core values and the independence of the Swedish brand," said Ford's chief financial officer Lewis Booth, AFP reported on Wednesday.

The Chinese enterprise has reportedly forwarded a request to buy Volvo for USD 2.5 billion, said the US daily The Wall Street Journal.

The US giant auto manufacturer put the brand up for sale in December 2008, having flogged its Land Rover and Jaguar nameplates for USD 2.5 billion in June the same year to reportedly minimize losses. The Swedish project lost USD 231 million in the second quarter, the journal added.

"Any prospective sale would have to ensure that Volvo has the resources, including the capital investment, necessary to further strengthen the business and build its global franchise," Booth added.

WHO: “Israel Prevented Entry Of Medical Equipment Into Gaza”

October 30, 2009 12:15 - by Saed Bannoura - IMEMC & Agencies

The World Health Organization (WHO) stated that Israel had prevented, for the fourth time, the transfer of medical supplies and equipment to the besieged Gaza Strip.

The supplies were supposed to be allowed into the Gaza Strip through the Kerem Shalom (Karem Abu Salem) Crossing.

The WHO added that in spite of conducting the needed coordination, Israel still prevented the entry of the desperately needed supplies.

Israel imposed the siege on Gaza in mid 2006 in an attempt to isolate the elected government, dominated by the Hamas movement.

The siege led to the death of hundreds of patients, while hundreds could face the same fate should the siege remain in place.

The three-week war on the Gaza Strip earlier this year caused a further deterioration in the humanitarian situation in Gaza. Nearly 1600 Palestinians were killed and some 6000 were wounded.

Hearts, Minds, and Dollars

POLITICS: U.S. in Pakistan’s Mind: Nothing But Aversion

Analysis by Muhammad Idrees Ahmad

With Nato supply convoys passing through the NWFP, US military hardware frequently falls into the hands of insurgents.

PESHAWAR, Pakistan, Oct 30 (IPS) – To the west of Peshawar on the Jamrud Road that leads to the historic Khyber Pass sits the Karkhano Market, a series of shopping plazas whose usual offering of contraband is now supplemented by standard issue U.S. military equipment, including combat fatigues, night vision goggles, body armour and army knives.

Beyond the market is a checkpoint, which separates the city from the semi-autonomous tribal region of Khyber. In the past, if one lingered near the barrier long enough, one was usually approached by someone from the far side selling hashish, alcohol, guns, or even rocket-propelled grenade launchers. These days such salesman could also be selling U.S. semi-automatics, sniper rifles and hand guns. Those who buy do it less for their quality—the AK-47 still remains the weapon of choice here—than as mementos of a dying Empire.

The realisation may be dawning slowly on some U.S. allies, but here everyone is convinced that Western forces have lost the war. However, at a time when in Afghanistan the efficacy of force as a counterinsurgency tool is being increasingly questioned, there is a newfound affinity for it in Pakistan.

A survey conducted by the International Republican Institute (IRI) in July 2009, which excluded the Federally Administered Tribal Areas (FATA) and parts of the North West Frontier Province (NWFP)—the regions directly affected by war—found 69 percent of respondents supporting the military operation in Swat.

A different survey undertaken by the U.S. polling firm Gallup around the same time, which covered all of Pakistan, found only 41 percent supporting the operation. The Gallup poll also found a higher number—43 percent—favouring political resolution through dialogue.

The two polls also offer a useful perspective on how Pakistanis perceive the terrorist threat. If the country is unanimous on the need to confront militancy, it is equally undivided in its aversion for the U.S. Yet, both threats are not seen as equal: the Gallup survey found 59 percent of Pakistanis considering the U.S. as the bigger threat when compared to 11 percent for the Taliban; and, according to the IRI poll, fewer saw the Taliban (13 percent) as the biggest challenge compared to the spiralling inflation which is wrecking the economy (40 percent).

In 2001, when the United States launched its ‘war on terror’, many among Pakistan’s political elite and intelligentsia supported it, miscalculating the public mood, which was overwhelmingly hostile. This led to the protest vote which brought to power the religious alliance Muttahida Majlis-e-Amal (MMA) in two of the frontier provinces. The MMA had been alone in openly opposing U.S. intervention.

However, as Afghanistan fell, things went quiet and passions subsided. Pervez Musharraf, the military dictator, was able to present his decision to participate in the “war on terror” as a difficult but unavoidable choice. Internationally, his isolation ended, and as a reward the various sanctions imposed on Pakistan after the nuclear tests of 1998 were lifted.

The economy grew, so did Musharraf’s popularity. When under intense U.S. pressure in 2004 he sent the Pakistani military into the restive FATA region, people barely noticed. He managed to retain his support despite reports of atrocities, which, according to Human Rights Watch, included indiscriminate use of force, home demolitions, extrajudicial killings, torture and disappearances. Indeed, if he was blamed at all, it was for not going far enough.

Things changed when on Musharraf’s orders, soldiers stormed a mosque in Islamabad held by Taliban sympathizers in August 2007, which resulted in the deaths of many seminarians. The Taliban retaliated by taking the war to the mainland and terrorist attacks hit several major cities.

Musharraf was blamed, and with an emerging challenge from the civil society in the form of a lawyers’ movement and an insurgent media, his popularity went into terminal decline. Meanwhile, in the Malakand region, Swat and Dir emerged as new flashpoints. The threat from Taliban militants could no longer be ignored, but opinions differed as to how best to confront it. The majority supported a negotiated settlement.

The turning point came in May, when, after a peace deal between the government and militants had broken down, the military embarked on a major offensive in Malakand. Though the truce had temporarily brought calm to the region, both sides had failed to live up to their commitments.

Yet, in the aftermath the Taliban alone were blamed, and in the media a consensus developed against any further negotiations with the militants. The operation was hailed as a success despite the loss of countless lives and the displacement of up to three million people.

However, in the frontier itself, analysts remained less sanguine. Rahimullah Yusufzai, deemed the most knowledgeable commentator on frontier politics, considered it an “avoidable” war. Another leading analyst, Rustam Shah Mohmand, wondered if it was not a war against the Pakhtuns, the largest ethnic group in Afghanistan and the NWFP, since no similar actions were considered in other lawless regions.

Roedad Khan, a former federal secretary, described it as an “unnecessary war” which was “easy to prevent … difficult to justify and harder to win”. In the political mainstream all major parties felt obliged to support the war for fear of being labelled unpatriotic. The opposition came mainly from religious parties, and from cricketer-turned-politician Imran Khan’s Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (Movement for Justice).

Opinions were reinforced in favour of a military solution when militants launched a wave of terrorist attacks in anticipation of the Pakistani army’s new operation in FATA.

While the effects of the terrorist atrocities were there for all to see, the consequences of months of aerial bombing and artillery shelling that preceded the operation were less known.

A third of the total population of South Waziristan—site of the government’s newly launched anti-Taliban offensive—has been displaced, and it has received little relief. When an Associated Press crew met the refugees, they expressed their anger at the government by chanting “Long live the Taliban”.

Instead of winning hearts and minds, the Pakistani government is delivering them to the enemy.

Despite the best efforts of sections of the elite to take ownership of the war, the view persists that Pakistan is fighting an American war. That the military operation in South Waziristan follows an inducement of 1.5 billion U.S. dollars from the U.S. government, and is supported by U.S. drone surveillance, does little to disabuse sceptics of their notions.

Following the bombing of the International Islamic University in Islamabad last week, an Al Jazeera correspondent—a Scot—was accosted by an angry student who, mistaking him for an American, held him responsible for the attack.

Pakistanis are acutely aware that before 2002 there was no terrorist threat, and they remain equally convinced that the threat will vanish once U.S. forces withdraw from the region. But before that happens, some fear, Pakistan will have compromised its long-term stability.

Muhammad Idrees Ahmad (m.idrees@gmail.com) is the co-founder of Pulsemedia.org.

Armed settlers shoot Palestinian, beat his 89-year-old mother

Settler filmed shooting Palestinian in 2008 [MaanImages - Archive]

October 30, 2009

Bethlehem - Ma'an/Agencies - Aggressive orthodox Israeli settlers attacked the Salah family on their way to Friday prayers in a bid to take over their home in the East Jerusalem community of Beit Safafa.

The settlers, twelve according to Palestinian sources, six according to Israeli media, and three according to the Jerusalem police chief, pulled up in a car with an eviction order for Ali Ibrahim Salah and his children Ismail, Mohammad, Mahmoud, Ahmad, for their family homes. The buildings shelter 55 residents, 30 of which are under 12 years old. Salah said the settlers claimed they bought the homes from their Armenian owners.

The Palestinian News Network quoted Sheha Salah as saying that her husband had purchased the buildings from its owners in 1966, and had the documents to prove the validity of the sale.

Israeli high court issued an eviction order on the home in August, giving the family one month to vacate the premises.

An argument erupted as the settlers demanded the family get out of their home. One of the settlers, reportedly all in their 50s, was armed with a gun, and fired on the family members. Israeli sources differed saying between one and four were injured, most of them youth.

The following family members were admitted to the Al-Maqased hospital in East Jerusalem after the attack:

Daoud Salah, 18, sustained blows to the head and extensive bruising on his foot
Mohammad Salah, 48, sustained bruises to his lower back after being hit with an iron bar
Sheha Salah, 89, sustained bruises to his head and neck
Ismail Slah, 60, was shot with a live bullet in his hand
Ali Ibrahim Salah, 95, sustained moderate bruises to his body after being struck several times

Israeli news source Ynet said the middle-age extremists fled the scene after the shooting, and were later found and detained.

Spokesman of the Israeli police department in Jerusalem had a different version of the incident, saying "three Jewish people came to the home in Beit Safafa to deliver the eviction order to the family then fighting erupted. It seems one of the Jewish people opened fire with his personal weapon and injured one of the Arab residents in the hand...then the Jewish people fled the scene driving their car."

Following their release from the hospital, members of the Salah family were summoned to the police station for interrogation.

The Origins of the “Global Warming” Scare

Notsylvia Night - October 30, 2009

Did you know, that the “Human caused Global Warming” hypothesis didn´t originate in the 1980s, but actually in the 1880s? Although, until the late 1970s, the hypothesis was considered “a curiosity”, since it contradicted observed events.

Did you further know, that at first this hypothesis wasn´t publicly promoted by scientists or even environmentalists, but by a UN ambassador and a very ambitious British Lady politician?

It’s snowing in April. Ice is spreading in Antarctica. The Great Barrier Reef is as healthy as ever. And that’s just the news of the past week. Truly, it never rains but it pours – and all over our global warming alarmists.

Time’s up for this absurd scaremongering. The fears are being contradicted by the facts, and more so by the week.

- wrote Andrew Bolt in the Australian Herald Sun last April.

Then he goes on to debunk many of the main claims most “Global Warming” (renamed “Climate Change”) believers will cite in public:

-like the claim that
the earth is rapidly warming at the moment.
The facts, however, are
that according to data from Britain’s Hadley Centre, NASA’s Aqua satellite and the US National Climatic Data Centre
the fall in temperatures from just 2002 (until 2009) has already wiped out half the warming our planet experienced last century.
(See also: Climate Sensitivity Reconsidered)

-or the claim that
the polar ice is rapidly melting.
The facts, however, are
that a British Antarctic Survey, working with NASA, last (April) confirmed
ice around Antarctica has grown 100,000 sq km each decade for the past 30 years.

-or the claim, that
the oceans are warming up
The facts, however, are
according to Josh Willis, of NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory who evaluated
a five years study (done using) a network of 3175 automated bathythermographs deployed in the oceans by the Argo program, a collaboration between 50 agencies from 26 countries:
“There has been a very slight cooling”…

-or the claim that
sea-levels are rising dramatically.
The facts, however, are
according to the Jason-1 satellite mission monitored by the University of Colorado, that
for almost three years, the seas have stopped rising,

-or the claim,
that world-wide devastating storms (cyclones) are getting worse.
The facts, however, are
according to Ryan Maue of Florida State University, who
recently measured the frequency, intensity and duration of all hurricanes and cyclones to compile an Accumulated Cyclone Energy Index.()
The energy index is at its lowest level for more than 30 years.

-or the absolutely ridiculous claim by World Vision boss Tim Costello that Asia was a “region, thanks to climate change, that has far more cyclones, tsunamis, droughts”.
The facts are
(besides that Tsunamis are caused by earthquakes)
according to a 2006 study by Indur Goklany, who represented the US at the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change:
“There is no signal in the mortality data to indicate increases in the overall frequencies or severity of extreme weather events, despite large increases in the population at risk.”

Most of the myths, which are now slowly being debunked by scientists through intensive research, have once been created by “scientists”.

The United Nations’ Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) has for several decades now employed “scientists” who claim

that human activities are responsible for nearly all earth’s recorded warming during the past two centuries.

writes David R. Legates in “Breaking the “Hockey Stick”

A widely circulated image used by the IPCC dramatically depicting these temperature trends resembles a hockey stick with three distinct parts: a flat “shaft” extending from A.D. 1000 to 1900, a “blade” shooting up from A.D. 1900 to 2000, and a range of uncertainty in temperature estimates that envelops the shaft like a “sheath.”

This image was produced by Michael Mann, Ray Bradley and Malcolm Hughes

(other colleagues working with Mann on his subsequent “climate change” research-papers were Philip D. Jones and Gavin Schmidt)…..

However, five independent research groups have uncovered problems with the underlying reconstructions by Mann and his colleagues in their 1998 and 1999 work that have persisted through his most recent collaborative efforts, calling into question all three components of the “hockey stick.”

Mann and Jones indicate that globally- and hemispherically-averaged air temperatures from A.D. 200 to 1900 were nearly constant. Missing from their timeline, however, are the widely recognized Medieval Warm Period (about A.D. 800 to 1400) and the Little Ice Age (A.D. 1600 to 1850).
Most proxy records from around the globe show these climatic events, as Willie Soon, Sallie L. Baliunas and I concluded in a 2003 paper published in Energy and the Environment.

For instance:
* In such widely disparate regions as Argentina, Chile, southern Peru, southern Africa and northern China, records indicate a marked warming at the beginning of the last millennium followed by extreme cold during the middle centuries.

* Historical proxies for temperature – such as tree rings, ice cores and bore holes – in New Zealand, Australia and California also confirm widespread, significant warming and cooling trends…..

(Scientists) Stephen McIntyre and Ross McKitrick..().. contend that Mann and his colleagues in their 1998 and 1999 papers unjustifiably truncated or extrapolated trends from source data, used obsolete data, made incorrect calculations, and associated data sets with incorrect geographical locations….

More recently,(scientists) David Chapman, Marshall Bartlett and Robert Harris identified methodological problems in a 2003 Geophysical Research Letters study by Mann and G. Schmidt.

Specifically, Mann and Schmidt eliminated specific proxy records (data from bore holes) they thought were inaccurate. Chapman et al. showed that Mann and Schmidt had unjustifiably excluded the bore-hole data and concluded that their methods were “just bad science” and that they presented a “selective and inappropriate presentation” of results..….

Jan Esper, David Frank and Robert Wilson () further argued that the fatal flaw with Mann, Bradley and Hughes’ temperature reconstruction is its incorrect representation of longer-term trends.

They observed that the statistical methods used inappropriately remove trends over long time periods..

But the meteoric rise of the “Global Warming – bad science” into a global dogma and from there into the legislation of, by now, most nations on earth, did not originate with scientists at all.

Richard Courtney, founding member of the European Science and Environment Forum and technical adviser to several members of the British Parliament as well as to some British members of the European Parliament wrote the 1999 article “Global Warming: How It All Began” in which he explores the history of this particular pseudo-science.

The hypothesis of man-made global warming has existed since the 1880s. It was an obscure scientific hypothesis that burning fossil fuels would increase CO2 in the air to enhance the greenhouse effect and thus cause global warming. Before the 1980s this hypothesis was usually regarded as a curiosity because the nineteenth century calculations indicated that mean global temperature should have risen more than 1°C by 1940, and it had not.

Then, in 1979, Mrs. Margaret Thatcher (now Lady Thatcher) became Prime Minister of the UK, and she elevated the hypothesis to the status of a major international policy issue…..

Courtney goes on to explain, that in 1979 Thatcher actually did not yet have a much stature abroad or at home. In Britain her only claim to fame as an Education Secretary in the Heath administration that collapsed in 1974 was as ‘Milk Snatcher Thatcher’ due to her policy of ending distribution of milk to British school-children.

It was Britain´s Ambassador to the United Nations, Sir Crispin Tickell, who suggested she should use the issue of “Global Warming” as a means to gain national and international credibility.

He also suggested, that Thatcher with her education, a degree in chemistry, could easily win debates on scientific subjects, since most other politicians were “scientifically illiterate” .

As an aside, there are quite interesting parallels between the British “Iron Lady” of the 1980s and the German “Iron Lady” of today.

Like Thatcher, Angela Merkel was not widely known before she was put into office by her party.
(Why they chose her is rather a mystery. Merkel was actually loosing votes for her conservative Christian Democratic Party, with her pro-Iraq-war position, when practically the whole German nation was opposed to it, and the seeming inability to produce a single genuine smile reaching the eyes, which gave her a definite lack of public charisma.)

Like Thatcher, Merkel also has degree in science, a doctorate (Dr. rer. nat.) for her thesis on quantum chemistry.

Like Thatcher, Merkel is busy cutting down on workers´ rights and on the German social safety net. Merkel, the pro-corporate and anti-union German chancellor, is also a strong supporter of carbon tax legislation, both in Germany and in Europe, as well as a mandated global reduction in CO2 to combat “Global Warming”.

Margaret Thatcher went for Ambassador Tickell´s “Global Warming” to strengthen her prominence. Her Conservative Party went for it, to weaken the British coal-miners labor union. “Global Warming” would then give the nuclear industry a push, since now coal-fueled power-stations could be replaced by nuclear power-stations for “environmental” reasons. Britain´s nuclear industry urgently needed that kind of a push since the Three Mile Island accident had damaged public confidence in nuclear technology.

The other rationale for why nuclear power should be used instead of coal, the alleged cost benefit, was being destroyed, when privatization of the Britain’s electricity supply industry exposed that British nuclear power was produced at four times the cost of electricity produced in coal-fueled power plants.

And, writes Courtney,

the Conservative Party wanted a large UK nuclear power industry for another reason. That industry’s large nuclear processing facilities were required for the UK’s nuclear weapons programme and the opposition Labour Party was then opposing the Conservative Party’s plans to upgrade the UK’s nuclear deterrent with Trident missiles and submarines.

Subsequently the “Global Warming” issue was promoted by large government grants and funds. Scientists fell in line through peer pressure and for fear of losing their research funding and not because they actually were convinced by the argument.

In 1992 Greenpeace International conducted a survey of the world’s 400 leading climatologists. Greenpeace had hoped to publicize the results of that survey in the run-up to the Rio summit, but when they completed the survey, they gave very little publicity to its results. In response to the survey, only 15 climatologists were willing to say they believed in global warming, although all climatologists rely on it for their employment.

Though not all scientists sold out their integrity for funds:

Following the Leipzig Climate Conference in November 1995,

the Leipzig Declaration disputes the IPCC assertions about man-made global warming. It was drafted and has been signed by over 1,500 scientists from around the world.

Today the “Global Warming” and “Climate Protection” issue is being sold to the public as being a liberal or even a left-wing concern. Forgotten is it´s very much right-wing, anti-union corporate and militarist origin.

Green and environmental minded people also seem to have forgotten the connection between “Global Warming” and the nuclear power-industry, and anti-war activists never seem to register, that “Global Warming” was actually used to create more weapons of mass-destruction.

The fact that the “Global Warming” or “Climate Change” issue isn´t really about environmental protection is clearly shown, for instance, by the US Climate Change Bill, promoted by the new US Obama Administration and his “progressive” Democratic Party.

Atheo News writes about the bill in Dr. Chu’s Energy Bait and Switch

The congressional mandates “are very weak and really will not require any additional renewables beyond what states already are doing,” says Mark Sinclair of Clean Energy States Alliance. “It will be meaningless. It’s just a gesture.”

Marchant Wentworth of the Union of Concerned Scientists came to a similar conclusion, seeing that absolute requirements for renewables, after allowances, would be as low as 8 percent of total electric power generation for each utility. This is hardly a challenge for most utilities in a nation that in 2006 generated almost 10 percent of its electricity from renewable sources, including hydro power.

In other words, the proposed renewable sources requirements amount to little more than shallow symbolism. The current public subsidies and underwriting for nuclear power already make the nuclear choice more economically viable for utilities to maximize return on utility investment. The legislation is, in fact, a thinly veiled mandate for building new nuclear power plants, or to increase output from existing ones.

Republicans are offering a different plan that simply calls for building 100 new nuclear plants within the next twenty years.

These plans mirror similar policies across the Atlantic where the government in Britain is rushing a new generation of nuclear power plants, with a goal to begin construction within four years. Both ‘energy independence’ and climate change were cited as rationales by policy makers there as well.

Obama’s Secretary of Energy, Dr. Steven Chu, from Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, is a staunch advocate of nuclear power, citing it as “essential” due to global warming while at the same time ignoring the carbon emissions of the “nuclear cycle” that are produced from the mining, milling, enrichment, fuel fabrication and disposal of spent fuel. The new appointee described nuclear power as “carbon free” at his confirmation in January.

While the “Global Warming” or “Climate Change” skeptics (sometimes called “deniers”) are often accused of being paid assets of the oil industry, the economical and political advantages of the “Global Warming” pseudo-science for the nuclear power industry cannot be denied any longer.

There is, however, an even stronger and even less publicly known connection of the “Global Warmers” with another industry, as Aletho News reports:

The new Democratic climate change bill , introduced in the Senate by Barbara Boxer and John Kerry, contains more advantages for nuclear power than even the legislation which passed in the House of Representatives last June. Included are waste management, financing and loan guarantee arrangements, regulatory risk insurance, as well as R&D and training programs. Joseph Lieberman is understood to be preparing the fine print for the bill which is presently “short on details”…..

As with other major pieces of legislation under consideration by the current Congress, the financial industry is a central actor, venture capitalists “are ready to pour multibillions of dollars into clean energy” if Congress passes “some kind of bill that talks about energy independence and climate change,” Boxer said.

How deep the connection between the “Climate Change” movement and the financial industry actually is, and how important the matter is for the elite of this industry, and how this even is connected to the issue of Iran´s civilian nuclear energy program, will be the subject of part two of this report.

Part Two:

Where "Global Warming" and "Peak Oil" meet

News and resources for the UK BDS Movement

Boycott Israeli Goods

The PSC and BIG call for a comprehensive boycott of Israeli Goods

A personal boycott of Israeli products helps remove consumers from complicity with Israeli apartheid. As ethical consumers we can conduct our boycott ‘where we are at’, in whatever town or country. International networks and co-ordinated activities are proliferating. PSC branches engage in regular boycott activities across the UK.

Vegetable exports to the European market are crucial to the Israeli economy, amounting to some 80 per cent of total exports. The UK continues to be the largest market, taking 60 per cent share of export volume. Potatoes, capsicum, fresh herbs, dates and cherry tomatoes, generated the highest returns to Israel’s growers in 2004-5. Companies such as Carmel Agrexco were the beneficiaries. Raising questions about labelling and sourcing at supermarket AGMs has become a feature of our boycott campaign. DEFRA and the Office of Fair Trading have faced demands for clarity and legality on labelling. Department stores such as Selfridges have taken cosmetics produced in Israel’s illegal settlements off their shelves, only to replace them under duress from the Israeli Embassy.

The BIG campaign aims to promote a consumer boycott and to actively campaign against corporations selling Israeli goods.

BIG aims to store files on corporations selling Israeli goods on Who Sells Israeli Goods page.

Some common Israeli goods:

  • Tivall (Sainsbury's Meatfree Hot Dog Sausages and Vegetarian Sausages)
  • Carmel (West Bank) (Organic Fruit and Veg sold in most Supermarkets)
  • Tomer (West Bank) (Organic Fruit and Veg sold in most Supermarkets)
  • Beigel and Beigel (West Bank) (Sweets and Pretzels etc)
  • Agriver/Flowersdirect (West Bank) (strawberries sold in Aldi), but also other berries, cut herbs, pomegranates, figs, peppers, passion fruit, plums, carrots, cut melons, cut mangos and many other products.


  • Galil Wines (The Golan Heights) (Waitrose, Sainsbury's)
  • Palwin Wine (West Bank) (Sainsbury's, Tesco, Waitrose)
  • Carmel Wine (West Bank) (Smithfield Wines, Manchester)
  • Tishbi (Smithfield Wines, Manchester)
  • Binyamina (West Bank/Golan) (John Lewis, Waitrose)

These are just a small selection of the illegal goods exported from Israel, feel free to add to this, it is just our attempt at increasing awareness.. Distribute to as many as possible and if you're looking for fresh produce, Always Buy Local.

More information on who profits from the occupation.

Please sign the Scottish Palestine Solidarity Campaign's e-petition to the Scottish Parliament which calls "the Scottish Parliament to urge the Scottish Executive and individual MSPs to cancel all contract(s) they have with Eden Springs Israeli water company.

Three Ohio Men Convicted of Being Muslims at the Wrong Time in America

By Stephen Lendman - October 30, 2009

In an October 22 press release, the Department of Justice (DOJ) announced another victory in its Global War on Terrorism, renamed the Overseas Contingency Operation to continue its jihad on Muslims, abroad and at home.

By now the charges are familiar, always bogus, and announced earlier about three Ohio men in a Justice Department February 2006 press release as follows:
"Three (Toledo, Ohio men) have been charged with conspiring to commit acts of terrorism against persons overseas, including US military personnel serving in Iraq, and with conspiring to provide material support to terrorists...."
On February 16, 2006, a Cleveland federal grand jury returned a five-count indictment against Mohammad Zaki Amawi, Marwan Othman El-Hindi, and Wassim I. Mazloum alleging they conspired, together and with others, "to kill or maim persons outside of the United States, including US military personnel serving in Iraq, and with conspiring to provide material support to terrorists. Amawi is also charged, individually, with distributing information regarding explosives and two counts of making verbal threats against the President of the United States."

Amawi holds both US and Jordanian citizenship. El-Hindi is also a US citizen, and Mazloum is a permanent legal resident.

The indictment further alleges that these men "engaged in activities in furtherance of their common goal to wage violent jihad, or 'holy war,' against American soldiers and Coalition allies serving in Iraq. Such activities included training and target shooting, receiving instructions in the construction and use of explosives - including improvised explosive devices (IEDs) and 'suicide bomb vests,' - recruiting others to participate in jihad training, attempting to raise funds to finance the training and to support violent jihad activities, and attempting to acquire and deliver materials - including explosives and computers - to others engaged in violent jihad in the Middle East. The indictment alleges that the conspiracy began sometime prior to November 2004."

Amawi was accused of traveling to Jordan on August 22, 2005 to deliver five laptop computers to the "co-conspirators." They were never delivered. No explanation was given why. Perhaps there were none in the first place, but, no matter. Carrying, transporting, or delivering computers isn't a crime.

Amani also "allegedly downloaded a video from a 'mujahideen website' which depicted the step-by-step construction and use of a bomb vest, and then copied it on a disk and distributed (it) to an individual who was going to be providing jihad training to the defendants. That individual - identified in the indictment as 'the Trainer' - has been cooperating since the beginning of this investigation (as a paid informant) and acting on behalf of the government" to entrap innocent men with no plans to commit terrorism. More on him below.

Other charges alleged "that in October 2004 and again in March 2005, Amawi made verbal threats to kill or inflict bodily harm upon the President of the United States. The maximum sentence....of conspiring to kill or maim persons in a foreign country is 35 years in prison, or life in prison if the conspiracy is to kill."

The maximum sentence for conspiring to provide material support to terrorists is 15 years; for distributing information on explosives, 20 years, and for making verbal threats against the President, five years.

In a prepared statement, Attorney General Alberto Gonzales said:
"This case stands as a reminder of the need for continued vigilance. We are committed to protecting Americans - here and overseas, particularly the brave men and women of the US Armed Forces who are serving our country by striving valiantly to preserve democracy and the rule of law in Iraq."
FBI Director Robert Mueller added:
"These arrests in indictments are examples of how, through close cooperation with our partners and enhanced intelligence capabilities, we are able to detect terrorist planning and prevent acts of terrorism before they occur."
Members of Toledo's Muslim community were shocked, saddened, and angered over the arrests. They also feared growing anti-Muslim sentiment against its 6,000 members that once included former mayor Michael Damas (1912 - 2003), perhaps the first Arab-American elected (in 1959) to high office in a large US city.

After their arrest, Amawi's (unnamed) brother told CNN he had nothing against the president, just the war. Mazloum's brother, Bilal, said his brother didn't own a gun or know how to use one. "He liked to help people. He never tried to hurt (anyone). I mean, he never (did) anything bad."

El-Hindi's lawyer at the time, Stephen Hartman, said:

"Let's face it. The atmosphere in America now, if there is an allegation of terrorism, and you are Middle Eastern, (or) Muslim, people are going to assume you're guilty" because prosecution charges and media reports imply the worst.

On February 23, 2006, the Toledo Blade reported that a year before his arrest, El-Hindi "offered spiritual nourishment to Muslim prisoners at the Toledo Correctional Institution as an 'imam,' or religious leader." Yet according to FBI Director Mueller:
"Prisons continue to be fertile ground for extremists who exploit both a prisoner's conversion to Islam while still in prison, as well as their socioeconomic status and placement in the community upon their release."
That said, warden Khelleh Konteh, explained that federal agents never asked him about El-Hindi's work, and expressed surprise about his arrest. Before his appointment was approved, a routine background check showed no prior arrests and a clean record.

On June 13, 2008, a jury convicted the defendants on all counts:
-- Amawi and El-Hindi on conspiring to kill or maim persons outside the United States, conspiring to provide material support to terrorists, and two counts of distributing information on explosives; and

-- Mazloum on conspiring to kill or maim persons outside the United States and conspiring to provide material support to terrorists.
At the time, the DOJ claimed these "convictions represented the nation's first successful trial of a 'homegrown terror cell' for terrorism related crimes."

On October 22, a DOJ press released announced: the "Three (men were) Sentenced for Conspiring to Commit Terrorist Acts Against Americans Overseas:"
-- for Amawi, 20 years in prison, followed by life on supervised release;

-- for El-Hindi, 13 years, including 12 years for "terror violation(s)" and 18 months on fraud; and

-- for Mazloum, 100 months or 8.3 years, followed by life on supervised release.
At trial, Amawi's lawyer, Edward Bryan, said his client hated the Iraq war, cheered US soldier deaths, admired suicide bombers' courage, but isn't a terrorist and talk of going to Iraq was just talk.

"He doesn't have the courage to be like them," said Bryan. "It's fantasy. It's stuff going on in (his and other) people's minds, but not what they're really going to do. (He had no) plan to go out and murder American soldiers." He wanted to learn how to defend himself because he feared he and his family were threatened like other Muslims. "This is defensive Islam. Do they not have the right to defend themselves" without being charged with terrorism or conspiracy to commit it?

El-Hindi's lawyer, Charles Boss, said despite the "quantity" of evidence, its "quality....wasn't there." In other words, for his client and the others, it was the usual circumstantial claptrap, most gotten from the paid informant who egged on the three men, gave them money and gifts, including a cell phone and laptop, and got them to vent the way millions of Americans do about an illegal war and the millions of lives it cost.

Lawyers for all three said, over a two year period, the undercover informant manipulated their clients by suggesting jihadi tactics and entrapped them in recorded conversations.

According to Amawi, he took them to a shooting range and encouraged them to act violently. He's "the one (who) put a real gun in my hand," he said in his first public comment since his 2006 arrest. The informant lied, he said, about his wanting to travel to Iraq to become a martyr. "I'm against suicide bombing. I made this very clear."

Former Army Special Forces soldier Darren Griffin was the paid informant (referred to above as "Trainer") and key prosecution witness. He testified that by posing as a disgruntled Islam convert, he won their trust, then manipulated them through holy war training talk, secretly recorded on conversations to entrap them. However, he admitted that the men were only together once during his involvement, and he never saw emails from them about wanting to kill soldiers.

Defense attorneys said the men never bought weapons or terrorist supplies, never planned an attack, and never carried one out. They merely expressed anger, not terror plans or conspiracy to commit them. But clever prosecutors can intimidate juries to believe it, so innocent Muslims, like the defendants, are easily entrapped, convicted, and sentenced to long prison terms, even though there's no plot, no weapons, no crime, nor intention to commit one.

Talk is talk, not a crime, and, in this case and others like it, manipulated to sound incendiary, but that's not proof of intent. No matter, if juries believe it, innocent victims are punished for being Muslims at the wrong time in America.

Stephen Lendman is a Research Associate of the Centre for Research on Globalization. He lives in Chicago and can be reached at lendmanstephen@sbcglobal.net.

Also visit his blog site at sjlendman.blogspot.com