Guardian manages to blame Israel for Palestinian misogyny, rape and violence

A Jan. 1 article published in the Guardian’s Global Development section by Liz Ford started off promising enough, with a rare look into the culture of misogyny, rape, spousal abuse and honor killings in Palestinian society.


The article begins thusly:

A comedy series and a ‘Judge Judy’-style show will be among the programmes aired across the Palestinian territories in 2015, as part of a multimedia project to raise awareness of, and seek to prevent, violence against women and girls.

The Ma’an Network, an independent, non-profit media organisation that broadcasts across the West Bank and Gaza….will air shows that tackle often taboo subjects, such as marital rape, over the next three years.

The programmes will be supported by a series of workshops in more remote, conservative areas to discuss violence prevention. 

 The Guardian then provided some background:

Violence against women in my country is still widespread,” said Raed Othman, founder and general director of the network. “Women are still killed because of ‘honour’… if families think they have a sexual relationship outside of marriage. Still in my country there is significant violence against women – economic violence against women, social violence, verbal violence against women.

According to a report published by the Palestinian Authority in 2011, culture and tradition were often the main justifications for violence against women in Palestine.

Israel then enters the story.

First, there are these non-sequiturs.

The continuing Israeli occupation was also having a disproportionate effect on women.

“The occupation increases the burden on Palestinian women by destroying infrastructure and endangering their human security, further contributing to the denial of their basic rights,” said the report, which set out an eight-year national strategy to tackle the problem.

The reasoning is, at best, extremely unclear.  If, as they’ve acknowledged previously in the article, “culture and tradition” are “often the main justifications for violence against women in Palestine [West Bank and Gaza]”, how would the occupation – in the West Bank – conceivably impact Palestine’s misogynistic culture?

Then, there’s the implicit suggestion that Palestinians lack moral agency:

A 2009 study conducted by UN Women, cited in the report, found that violence against women increased in the aftermath of military strikes on Gaza in December 2008.

Are we to believe that Palestinian men can’t control themselves when faced with the sudden urge – following “military strikes on Gaza” – to assault women and girls?

More broadly, it’s quite telling that, out of 560 words of total text, an article ostensibly about violence, rape, honor killings and misogyny within Palestinian society devotes 117 words (over 20% of the total) to criticizing Israel.

Additionally, it’s interesting to note that this isn’t a one-off for the Guardian.  

A 2011 Guardian article entitled Women in Gaza: how life has changed, by Angela Robson, attributed nearly everything negatively affecting women in Gaza – from domestic violence to unemployment – to one single source, the Israeli ‘blockade’.

Here’s the money quote from that piece:

“Before the blockade, my husband used to make good money working in Israel,” she [a Palestinian woman named Eman] says. “With the blockade, that all stopped. When he can’t find any work and we have nothing to eat, he blames me. He is a like a crazy animal. I stay quiet when he hits me. Afterwards, he cries and says, if he had a job, he wouldn’t beat me.”

Such articles beg the question: Is it even conceivable the Guardian would ever contextualize the problem of Israeli spousal abuse and rape by noting the stress (faced by Jewish men living in southern communities) caused by incessant Palestinian rocket fire, and the threat of other terror attacks? 

Of course they wouldn’t!

A better illustration of the Guardian Left’s bigotry of low expectations in their coverage of the region would be difficult to find.

12 replies »

  1. “..Are we to believe that Palestinian men can’t control themselves when faced with the sudden urge – following “military strikes on Gaza” – to assault women and girls?..”

    In a word – yes. Don’t forget that al-Groan believes this, and is the prime mover of the racism of low expectations. It treats the Palestinians as children who cannot control themselves. Heaven forfend that it should suggest that Palestinian males man up and take responsibility for their behaviour and learn to control their baser urges rather than blame others for whatever wrong they do.

    And the notion isn’t a new one, either. The late Eyyad al-Sarraj, a Palestinian psychiatrist, gave it specious “scientific” validity when he blamed israel for the alleged increase in the incidences of Palestinian men bashing their wives and children.

    From another source we read:

    “…As men lose faith and confidence in the face of their traumatic experiences, women often bear the brunt in physical abuse. Up to a quarter of Palestinian women in the Gaza Strip have been exposed to domestic violence and abuse at some point in their lives, mainly from their blood relatives and husbands. Women also exhibit a higher prevalence of mental disorder than men. One explanation for this could be to do with how the conflict has changed women’s roles in ways that are often very difficult to accommodate. Traditionally, Palestinian society was authoritarian and patriarchal. With the advent of the intifada, however, women have been politically active alongside men. The structure of Palestinian homes has also changed because husbands are often absent, whether for work in Israel, in Israeli detention or dead, or suffering from the effects of trauma….” (source

    Note that this article argues that there is more domestic violence because the role of women has changed, but nowhere in that excerpt is any attempt to suggest that the males who perpetrate that violence should be prevented from doing so and punished if they do. No, rather the usual “they are driven to it..” nonsense is regurgitated yet again. And nowhere is there any apprehension that the one sure antidote to this increase is to desist from the acts of terror which regularly rebound spectacularly upon them!

  2. ““The occupation increases the burden on Palestinian women by destroying infrastructure and endangering their human security,”

    Yes, of course, Palestinians were just loaded with a great infrastructure the world could only envy and then came the “brutal” occupation to take it all away and humiliate this proud peeeeple.

  3. “Such articles beg the question: Is it even conceivable the Guardian would ever contextualize the problem of Israeli spousal abuse and rape by noting the stress (faced by Jewish men living in southern communities) caused by incessant Palestinian rocket fire, and the threat of other terror attacks? ”

    Great summation Adam.

    Rest assured that the Guardian would find a completely different cause for any Israeli domestic problem.

    • e.g. something in the Talmud, or the Protocols, or David Duke …
      This cageliner masequerading as a newpaper would blame Israel for sunspots.

  4. The corollary is obvious: Because of their negative effect on employment, BDS and Hamas rocket fire are the cause of rape and spousal abuse in Palestinian society.

  5. Mordechai Kedar, an Israeli expert on Arabs said this in Toronto a few years ago. He was painting a picture of the Arab psyche. I will try to paint it in full colour for you: In the heartland of most Arab lands lies what the West does not see and therefore does not understand. In the impoverished, desert heat live millions of Arabs throughout the Middle East. Although these people have difficulty feeding themselves, the rulers of the families (men) manage to find enough money for 4 things: a rusted out vehicle with duct tape holding it together, cell phones, a TV and a satellite dish. The vehicle is a good thing as it gives the men something to tinker with other than beating their wives or killing their daughters. So these devout Muslims are suddenly faced with hundreds of channels to choose from. Anything from CNN to Jerry Springer. But wait, what’s this on channel 304? PORN! He thinks he struck gold. While jerking off to fantastic lewd images that up until then he could only dream of, he’s cursing us in the West for making such unIslamic, forbidden movies. You see it’s our fault, not his. He is sinning because of us! How dare us for making him sin!

  6. The fact that these men abuse and violate women is hardly new…or only a Muslim issue. Men right here in the states abuse, molest, abduct, even murder women for less reasons then HONOR…just opportunity, date rape, lust or violence. We women have attempted to bring an end to it raising awareness, as in: ..take back the night, rape kits, and whistles…rather simple attempts for an outrageous problem. Golda Meir had a great solution: Since it is MEN who are a pox on society as threats to women: There needs to be a curfew for men. .They need to be remanded to the house UNLESS they have permission to leave. Keeping them off the streets and out of public places will keep women safer.

  7. Started reading, but have to go, but thought, “Then we should just say that all of the the 66 years of media attacks on Israel, like this one, must be the cause of why Israel is doing what the media falsely accuses them of doing.”

  8. Guardian . . . of what?

    By Tabitha Korol

    The Guardian, supported by the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, does for the reading public what Common Core books, also supported by the Gateses, do for American students – it provides a wealth of misinformation with an agenda. In its Global Development section, writer Liz Ford wrote of the role of girls and women under Islam, specifically Palestinians, and the violence to which they are subjected in their society.

    Because her itemization was inaccurate and lacking references, I can provide some specifics about their driving force:
    • Koran 4:34 Allah has made men superior to women and, therefore, women must be obedient or be admonished and beaten.
    • M10-12 If the wife is rebellious, the man may warn her, follow with hitting, and beating but not breaking her bones or damaging her face. He may even imprison her in a room and withhold food and clothing.
    • M10:4 A man may forbid his wife to leave the home.
    • 022:1 Women may never become judges (they are not equal)
    • L10:3 A woman’s value is half that of a man, because her “mind is deficient.” A woman should receive half the money of a man in an indemnity case, because women lack in intelligence and religion.
    • 2:282 Her testimony is worth half the man’s.
    • Bukhari 7,722,229 Deals with female genital mutilation and is compulsory. The term “circumcision” deceptively applies to both men and women, but what they do to women is indeed severe mutilation.
    • 012.6 Extra-marital relations are forbidden, and the penalty for women is stoning to death; it is also recommended in “honor” killings. Men are held blameless.
    • Bukhari 7,62.18 It is lawful to take a child bride. Mohammed was 51 when he proposed to six-year-old Aisha. Recently it was announced that a man may marry an infant who is still being breastfed.

    The Palestinian National Authority Ministry of Women’s Affairs (MoWA) is acknowledging its gender issues in order to work toward developing a Palestinian state. According to a report published by the Palestinian Authority in 2011, culture and tradition were often the main justifications for violence against women in “Palestine.” Each of the reasons for humiliation and cruelty towards women is included in the Koran, some of which are noted above.

    Despite the report’s admission that specified Islamic culture and tradition as the cause of abuse toward women, the Guardian’s writer, Liz Ford, has chosen to blame Israel – the only country in the Middle East where all its citizens live in freedom and with equal rights. She has also called Israel an “occupier,” when, in fact, the territory is “disputed.” The territory has been Judea and Samaria for thousands of years, and Jordan annexed the area for a mere nineteen years (1948 – 1967) after the aggressive war against the new Jewish State. Thus, Ford’s information was incorrect, misleading and inflammatory. The mistreatment of women by Arabs and Muslims began at least 14 centuries earlier. Note, too, that if we delve into the times of Jews in restricted areas (ghettos), in the Middle East, Spain, Italy and Eastern Europe, a loving Jewish family life is what kept them stronger under duress.

    Another study in the same report, conducted by UN Women in 2009, blamed the men’s violence against women on the stress they felt after Israel’s military strikes on Gaza in December, 2008. With that reasoning, Jewish men who suffered post-traumatic stress syndrome from the preponderance of Palestinian rocket fire on Israel or sudden attacks on the street should have been equally violent, but there are no reports of comparable familial abuse in Israel.

    Through World Wars I and II, we heard of no abuse between husbands and wives who were fleeing for their lives from the impending horrors. If anything, families were protective and more caring of each other. And, despite the constant conditions of war from neighboring Islamic states, Israelis were rated among the happiest people in the world – not stressed from spousal abuse. In fact, it is highly unlikely that Israel’s medical, technological, and other creative innovations and advancements could have been made by abused, unhappy, depressed individuals.

    Are we to believe that Palestinian men have no self-control following military strikes on Gaza? By now, we have learned that Palestinian men have no self-control, period. In several previous articles, I have reported how the children are taught to hate and abuse animals, practice with weapons and hope to be shaheeds (martyrs), continue their training to behead live animals and captured humans, and increase their propensity for violence with staged “days of rage.” They cover their faces uniformly, hiding human expression, thereby hindering camaraderie and bonding, and developing an insensitivity to others. They celebrate death with distributed sweets when a son is killed while murdering Jews. Men gather in plazas to relish stoning someone’s wife to death. They have been robbed of all kindness and there is nothing left for even their own family members. Clearly, Islamic Sharia law, destroying freedoms and the sanctioning of hate, victimization, abuse, and killing, leads to dehumanization, pain, contempt, and despair.

    Another Guardian writer, Angela Robson, blamed the blockade for her husband’s job loss and consequential beastly behavior. Ohio was fifth in the U.S. for job losses (more than 303,000) attributed to the non-oil trade deficit in 2007. Michigan lost 319,200 jobs, 7.5 percent of total employment lost. California ranked first in terms of actual job losses, 696,000. The Economic Policy Institute reported four million jobs lost nationally in the U.S. in 2007, 70 percent of the displaced jobs in the manufacturing sector. America had no comparable increase in spousal abuse.

    The Guardian has been repeatedly responsible for “news reports” that are nonsensical, but insulting and destructive, propaganda that appeals to the ignorant. It makes one wonder how they can benefit from lying about a democracy while supporting a tyrannical regime. Is the Guardian welcoming the Islamic takeover in the UK? Does it welcome an ever-growing welfare role of immigrants who will never assimilate, but who will amplify violence on the streets of England’s fair cities, and ultimately impose Sharia laws on the land? The average citizen is alleged to be apolitical and unaffected. It makes one wonder just how many people in Merrie Olde England have lost sight of any lessons from WW II and are choosing to slumber again.

    James Madison, of English descent, wisely said, “The advancement and diffusion of knowledge is the only guardian of true liberty.”