Guardian provides platform for War on Want’s unbridled hate against the Jewish state

Often, the Guardian allows its Israel page to peddle Electronic Intifada style propaganda – fact-free hyperbole and hate that has no place at a serious ‘respectable’ news site.  Today is one of those days, as editors decided to publish a diatribe against Israel by the director of a radical anti-Israel NGO (Israel’s BDS blacklist is straight out of apartheid. The UK can’t condone it, Jan. 10).

The big lie in the op-ed, by War on Want (WoW) director Asad Rehman, in response to Israel’s decision to ban leaders from 20 pro-BDS groups from entering the country, that Israel is an apartheid state, shouldn’t drown out the ‘smaller’ lies, which begin in the opening paragraph, when readers are told that Israel’s “blacklist…bans 20 charities and human rights groups from entering the country…”.

However the groups banned, such as WoW, are not “human rights” organisations in any real sense of the term, but rather highly politicized radical anti-Israel pressure groups.  Indeed, in 2016, the British government stopped funding WoW, a sponsor of ‘Israel Apartheid Week’ in the UK.  The decision was reached following revelations that a speaker at a WoW event legitimised the lie that Israelis were harvesting dead Palestinians’ organs. At another WoW event, radical professor Steven Salaita justified Palestinians terror attacks against Israelis.

Other groups subject to the Israeli ban, such as Jewish Voice for Peace, have hosted and praised Palestinian terrorists, and have promoted antisemitic messages.  One JVP video included the outrageous suggestion that Jewish organizations are responsible for the killings of blacks in the U.S. by police.

In his op-ed, Rehman compares Israel’s ban on pro-BDS groups to restrictions imposed by South Africa during Apartheid.  However, whatever the merits of the Israeli law, as our colleague Gilead Ini recently demonstrated, it is in fact not substantially different than restrictions imposed by democracies such as the US.

Section 212(a) of the Immigration and Nationality Act says that an alien “whose entry or proposed activities in the United States the Secretary of State has reasonable ground to believe would have potentially serious adverse foreign policy consequences for the United States is inadmissible.”

As Ini noted, that’s much broader than Israel’s language.

The Immigration and Nationality Act also bars members of the Community party: “Any immigrant who is or has been a member of or affiliated with the Communist or any other totalitarian party (or subdivision or affiliate thereof), domestic or foreign, is inadmissible.”

And finally, it bars those who would break laws for the purpose of “opposition to ..  the United States.”

Professor Gerald Steinberg, of NGO Monitor, observed:

All democracies have regulations governing the issuance of visas and border entry regulations — there are inherent in state sovereignty. Countries [such as the UK] routinely ban racists; individuals who incite to violence and create social disorder/polarization etc. Tourist visas are not natural rights.

In an effort to provide more context to the ‘Israeli oppression’ narrative of his op-ed, Rehman writes:

 This year we remember that it is 70 years since more than 800,000 Palestinians were forcibly displaced from their homes; they are still denied their right to return by Israel.
However, no serious historian claims that all of the 800,000 [sic] Palestinian refugees from the 1948 War were “forcibly” expelled.  Most fled – in, let’s remember, what was an Arab war of annihilation – out of fear, or because of instructions from Palestinian Arab leaders.  Historian Benny Morris has concluded that there was no Israeli policy of “ethnic cleansing”.  “At no stage of the 1948 war”, he wrote, “was there a decision by the leadership of the Yishuv or the state to “expel the Arabs”.
Further, Rehman’s claim that Palestinians “are still denied their right to return to Israel” is extraordinarily misleading.  First, there are only tens of thousands of Palestinian refugees, from the 1948 war, still alive. And, there is no legally recognized “right of return” for the millions of Palestinian descendants of refugees (children, grandchildren, etc) who, though still qualifying for “refugee” benefits from UNRWA, are NOT actually refugees themselves.  Of course, if Rehman is indeed suggesting an unlimited right of “return” for 5 million non-refugee Palestinians to a country where most never once stepped foot, he’s essentially calling for the elimination of the Jewish state.
Rehman also falsely characterizes BDS as merely “a non-violent means of winning peace and justice”, when, as prominent BDS leaders have made clear, “peace” and “justice” are not their objectives.  The BDS movement’s co-founder, and lead spokesman, Omar Barghouti has not only justified the Palestinian “right” to “armed resistance”, but made clear that he would never accept the continued existence of a Jewish state within any borders.

Tellingly, Rehman himself has been revealed as someone who doesn’t merely advocate for Palestinian rights, but demonises Zionism and suggests its supporters are necessarily beyond the moral pale.

Graphic by Guido Fawkes

Contrary to the narrative promoted by the Guardian, BDS is not a ‘progressive’ civil rights movement, but represents quite the opposite: a regressive campaign by radical activists, all of whom seem to share an unhealthy fixation on Jews ‘behaving badly’, and some of whom openly seek to turn back the clock on civil rights by denying Jews, and only Jews, the right to freedom and self-determination.

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19 replies »

  1. Groups like War on Want, Jewish Voice for Peace, and New Israel Fund exploit the insidious tactic of giving themselves benign names. It actually works as there are very many gullible people out there.

    • You are correct, and that’s why they do it. Dishonesty is in. That’s what necessitates websites like this one.

    • Not unlike the old tactic of calling your totalitarian state “The Democratic Republic of …”

      • Oh, I’m from Florida. I never that Florida had a totalitarian government until. Sigh, it’s individuals like you that make holders of geography degrees like me very sad.

            • I don’t believe the “your” was referring specifically to you. He spoke of it as an old tactic. I think he was only referring to an old tactic used by totalitarian states to call themselves “democratic.”
              The Charlie in NY (if he’s the same one) comments BLT frequently at EoZ. He’s not an Israel basher.

  2. Omar Barghouti the Hypocrite

    Omar was born in Qatar, grew up in Egypt, attended Columbia University in the United states and moved to Ramallah as an adult. While telling Palestinians to boycott everything Israeli and Israeli Academia in particular, Omar applied not to a Palestinian University to take graduate studies but to Tel Aviv University where he was accepted as just another student.

    Omar also speaks the language of collective, universal human rights for Palestinians but denies that Israelis have any such rights. According to Omar Jews are not a people and they had and have no right to self determination of a Jewish state, no right to their own culture, customs, laws or government institutions and he demands these rights be taken away from Israeli Jews and that they be forced to live with a people who are highly an-Semitic. (According to the ADL over 90% of the Palestinian Arab population in the West Bank and Gaza is anti-Semitic.)

    Omar is a hypocrite because he talks about BDS being non-violent when he supports Palestinian resistance, all forms of Palestinian resistance. This means he accepts violence as a Palestinian right to achieve his goal of the destruction of a Jewish state and replacement by another Arab dominated state. This means he supports resistance in all forms such as suicide bombings, cutting the throats of Israeli children in their beds or blowing them up on their way to school or home. In reality his position is no different than that of Hamas’ charter except that he seeks a secular state instead of a theocratic state.

    Roberta Seid attended a lecture of Omar’s at UCLA in January 2014. She wrote:

    “[Omar] banged the drum for more bloodshed against Israeli Jews, for a fight to the finish that would undo the results of the 1948 war and be Zionism’s death knell.”

    “[Omar]hurled blood libels. Israeli soldiers shoot Palestinian children “for sport.” Indeed, they “provoke” the children, “entice them like mice, and then shoot them” for no reason. Often, it is just because the soldiers are “bored.”

    “He justified terrorism against Israelis, defending the Palestinians’ right to “resistance by any means, including armed resistance.”

    “Barghouti repeatedly denied that Jews are one of the indigenous peoples of the region. When an Israeli stood up and said he is a 10th-generation Israeli and indigenous, Barghouti scoffed. “You aren’t indigenous just because you say you are.”

    “He denied that the Jewish people have a right to self-determination. They are not a people, he declaimed, and the United Nations’ principle of the right to self-determination applies only to colonized people who want to acquire their rights. While he insisted that Palestinians must have “the right to have rights,” he denied that the Jewish people had any collective rights.”

    “When asked what he is doing to bring Hamas, the popular Palestinian fundamentalist movement that oppresses women and minorities and wants to establish a theocracy, to share his supposedly progressive vision, he sidestepped the question.”

    Seid wrapped up his article on Omar’s speech

    “I have often wondered what Jews or decent people could have done to push back against the anti-Semitic propaganda of 1930s Germany. I don’t know. But I do know that Omar Barghouti follows in that tradition of the “big lies,” the dehumanization of Israelis and incitement that would lead others to justify or excuse those who murder Israeli Jews. Historically, Jewish blood has been cheap too many times. It is critical that people of good will mobilize to protest and discredit the lies, educate the public, and re-educate the students who have been misled by the heady blend of bigotry, idealism and furious outrage that animates extremists like Barghouti.”

      • And exposing unsuspecting college students to the rantings of this unknowledgeable, and malicious screwball is educational malpractice (unless you’re trying to educate students about the existence of unknowledgeable, malicious screwballs).

  3. In my opinion, The Guardian is in part a voice of the Marxist point of view. It appeals to those on the Left who would prefer a Socialist-Marxist state where the government controls all. Currently, Islam is making great inroads into Western culture. I believe they would love to replace it with Sharia law. England, France, and Germany are in this axis and the Guardian seems to lend credence to their EU leftist philosophies. When will the free peoples of Europe rise up against these interlopers? Thank God, we here in America have Trump to stand with us against the swamp.

    • “Thank God, we here in America have Trump to stand with us against the swamp.”

      Yes Allan, and if you stand against a swamp you’re likely to end up with very wet feet. I fear in your case, based on the contents of your post, very wet feet will probably cause brain damage.

        • leah27z I am still waiting for your answers to the questions I put to you yesterday.
          It is rude to keep people waiting and I’m sure you would not want people to come to the conclusion that you are rude, bad mannered, and ignorant.
          So do get your finger out there’s a good old dear.