A Guest post by AKUS
The November 10th article by Seamus Milne of the Guardian, in a style reminiscent of a 1930’s Communist anticipating the inevitable triumph of the proletariat led by Comrade Stalin, offered Guardianistas the unlikely following prediction: The Palestinians of Israel are poised to take centre stage. The article included the obligatory example of swaggering Israelis abusing an aged Arab woman while the Guardian’s man in Jerusalem looked on helplessly, followed by a dreary rehash of Israel’s sins. These seemed principally to comprise its determination to evict squatters from property to which they have no title. From there, it was but a short leap to a hint that the triumphant taking back of the State of Israel by “the Palestinians of Israel” is at hand.
As every poll of Israel’s Arab communities has shown, when offered the opportunity to agree to some land swaps so that they could join their “Palestinian brothers” across the Green Line, Arab citizens of Israel have made it clear that they will not accept any such arrangement. In fact, it has been widely reported that Arabs from the West Bank have been buying property in Israel so that, when the day comes, they can become Israeli citizens. Far from occupying “center stage”, the vast majority probably heave a sigh of relief every time the “peace talks” enter yet another hiatus, the issue is once again shelved, and they can quietly go back to living their lives.
We had not seen Milne on the topic of the Middle East since, I think, the obligatory contribution to the attack on Israel during Cast Lead. I wondered where he suddenly developed his remarkable insights into the psyche, politics, and future of Arab Israelis. The Internet, the Great Giver, provided us with a set of pictures at MEMO, the UK’s Islamic “Middle East Monitor”, that prominently feature Milne. They appeared in an article under the headline Delegation of Islamic deputies meets with British parliamentarians. The article noted that “The British delegation included a number of [unnamed] journalists, parliamentarians and members of the British Labour Party.” Since all the people on the other side of the table were named as West Bank Arabs, it appears we may be viewing the entire “Delegation” in the picture below. Front and center is Milne, among the members of the delegation:
You can scan a set of these images at the website. The scarfed woman is likely CiF’s Laila El-Haddad and I suspect that if there is an Israeli Arab in the group it is the liberated woman in red. Seated next to Milne are British Labor MPs Jeremy Corbyn and Andrew Slaughter. The little blonde to Milne’s right appeared to be struggling to stay awake. Since all the people on the other side of the table visible in photographs provided by MEMO were named as West Bank Arabs, it appears we may be viewing the entire “Delegation”.
(MEMO, by the way, refuses to recognize Israel’s right to exist, and falls prey to the cognitive dissonance so prevalent in the Moslem mind:
The Israeli Organisation for Seismic Observation has confirmed the occurrence of a minor earth tremor in Upper Galilee, in the north of occupied Palestine.
Note the convoluted cognitive dissonance in this little snippet: “The Israeli Organisation for Seismic Observation” apparently exists in a place called “occupied Palestine” that includes the “Upper Galilee”. Since “occupied Palestine” has never existed the only way to report on that area is to use the Biblical and Israeli term, “Galilee”).
The Guardian appears to be relying less on its stable of British Jews to undermine Israel and is casting around for fresh meat to throw to the CiF mob. Seamus Milne is without a doubt the most stunning example of the Guardian’s total detachment from the real world and the editors must have felt that he would provide the Guardian’s perspective on things Middle Eastern in a particularly clear light. So they shipped him out to this meeting with a British delegation that included two British MPs and one Arab Israeli, where he developed the formidable knowledge of the attitudes and intentions of Israeli Arabs that he offered to the eager reading public on CiF.
All they achieved was to provide yet another example of the utterly shallow nature of the Guardian’s reporting from Israel.