The Guardian. “Britain’s viciously and notoriously anti-Israel newspaper.”

Stoking the fire of antisemitism and anti-Israel hate

   by Alan Simons

Many years ago in London, England, I worked for The Guardian. I have to admit I didn’t actually work in the editorial department, but I had day-to-day contact with many of the paper’s columnists and journalists. I even had to pay for the occasional round of drinks at the ‘local,’ around the corner from the office.

Unlike now, many of the editorial staff were media icons in their own right. Mark Arnold-Forster, Clare Hollingworth, Victor Zorza, John Cole, Mary Stott, Norman Shrapnel and of course Alistair Cooke in the USA, to name a few.

Editors of the past such as Alistair Hetherington, who continues to be regarded as one of the leading editors of the second half of the twentieth century, and Peter Preston both strove to present a balanced view. Since then the paper has strengthened its biased anti-Israel position.  A former president of the Board of Deputies of British Jews once stated, the paper is “viciously and notoriously anti-Israel.”

 It wasn’t always this way. C. P. Scott, one of the most famous editors of The Guardian had a strong friendship with Chaim Weizmann. It is believed their friendship played a role in the Balfour Declaration of 1917.

In 1948 The Guardian was a supporter of the new State of Israel. With Alistair Hetherington at the helm, The Guardian‘s favourable view of Israel continued, as illustrated in their Leader of Monday, June 12, 1967:

“Future security is [Israel’s] first concern. They will not give up the Sinai Peninsula, the West Bank of the Jordan, or the heights overlooking the upper Jordan valley until they know what the Arabs will accept. If there is no peace settlement, will they ever give them up?

“Israel wishes to live in peace. She does not want hostile neighbours on her borders, whoever they are, for another hundred or two hundred years. She wants normal trading relations with her neighbours. The offer of generous terms is therefore still worth trying – especially if, through the United Nations and all the Great Powers, Israel’s future frontiers are effectively guaranteed.”

In 2002 the paper ran a Leader which, in part said, “the Jewish community is right to fear that the repulsive antisemitism… in many Arab countries… can find an alarming echo within some British Muslim communities.” The Leader of 16 years ago could easily have been written yesterday. Mind you, I doubt if it would have been published in The Guardian!

“One of the main purveyors of anti-Israel bias in the UK and abroad.”

But, that was The Guardian of another period.  For today in 2018, The Guardian continually breaks all the barriers in stoking the fire of antisemitism and anti-Israel hate that in 2002 it found quite alarming.

UK Media Watch is “dedicated to combating antisemitism and promoting accurate reporting about Israel in the UK media.”  They believe “The Guardian has long been identified as one of the main purveyors of anti-Israel bias in the UK and abroad…”

Earlier this week, Adam Levick, Managing Editor of UK Media Watch, wrote a scathing article titled, “The Guardian View’ on the Gaza protests: one of their worst editorials on Israel ever.”  His article concludes, “The Guardian once again has demonised Israel, smearing the state as one defined primarily by racism and violence – an ugly caricature which has little resemblance to reality.  Moreover, the notion that Jerusalem should take security advice from the Corbyn-sympathising London intelligentsia is as risible as their suggestion that its citizens should take seriously the moralizing tales of Israeli darkness by the Hollywood left.” 

I urge you to read Levick’s article in full to appreciate the depth and viciousness of this once respected British newspaper.

Which brings me to Seumas Milne. Milne, The Guardian’s former far-left of centre associate editor and columnist has for many years had his fingers in the pie denouncing Israel at every possible occasion. 

Here is a 2014 video link to a speech given by Milne. Prior to working for The Guardian, Milne was the “business manager of Straight Left, a monthly publication of…  the Communist Party of Great Britain.” I suppose it’s a no-brainer to figure out where he’s coming from. Milne, “in front of thousands of anti-Israel protesters at Hyde Park in London, explicitly justified Palestinian terror attacks on Israelis (a refrain from his Guardian column in mid-July), and accused ‘terrorist’ Israel of ‘industrial scale’ killing in Gaza.” (As reported by UK Media Watch formerly CiF Watch). All this while being employed by The Guardian.

“Two Peas in a Pod!”

Milne is no longer The Guardian’s associate editor. In January 2017 he was appointed the British Labour Party‘s Executive Director of Strategy and Communications under Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn, who is also well-known for his anti-Israel stance and as someone who has not publicly denounced antisemitism.

It’s been said that the ethical challenges faced by journalists-turned-political advisers can be a challenging experience for the individual. But not for Milne. He must relish it! In Milne’s case,  it would seem the utter contempt he has for Israel continues to remain an indelible mark of approval at The Guardian, as seen by the paper’s incessant thirst to publish anti-Israel content.

And now, Milne’s opinion of Israel has been opportunistically transferred to his latest employer Jeremy Corbyn, as well as to many of Corbyn’s followers, both from within the British Labour Party and from the Party’s far-left anti-Israel, anti-Zionist and antisemitic followers.

According to Peter Wilby, writing in the New Statesman in March 2018, Milne as Corbyn’s spin doctor “has proved rather good at it… Wilby writes Milne is the closest of the leader’s team to Corbyn, after John McDonnell, the UK shadow chancellor and confidant of Jeremy Corbyn.”

G. M. Trevelyan, the British historian and academic, once said, “A little man often casts a long shadow.” Could it be Wilby has it wrong? With shadowy motives and murky desires could it be that Milne is actually now the closest confidant to Corbyn? Heaven help British Jewry!

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“Charlottesville: A renewed call for moral grandeur and spiritual audacity.”

OPINION

The following article and photos, which originally appeared in The Times of Israel on August 14, 2017, is republished in its entirety in jewishinfoNews with kind permission of its author Belle Jarniewski.

Belle Jarniewski

Several months ago, in the lead up to the American election, I found myself at an interfaith conference in Montreal. Susannah Heschel addressed the audience. Her powerful words, which seemed to be a clarion call, seem all the more important after Charlottesville. Heschel reminded us that the root of the Hebrew word alimut — violence is alef lamed mem — meaning elem “silence.” She asked us how we could dare abandon God to these fanatics — and certainly the white supremacists, neo-Nazis, KKK supporters and all the alt-right haters who have sprung up like poisonous mushrooms are indeed fanatics. With our silence, we allow violence and fanatics to proliferate. And finally, Heschel excoriated us…in particular “us” meaning liberal Jews, for having become “so insipid.”

Mordechai_liebling

Rabbi Mordechai Liebling

We can be proud that rabbis such as Mordechai Liebling and other Jewish clergy and rabbinical students did not remain silent. They traveled to Charlottesville to take part in the counter-rally and spoke out. Some Jewish organizations have spoken out as well. Israeli Education Minister Naftali Bennett condemned the rally and called on US leaders to denounce anti-Semitism.

Liebling’s voice was in support of something broader: “It’s really important for Jews to be visible in this space and stand up for love and for God and for democracy… it is important to make sure that each of is us is treated as we are in the image of God.” Like Susannah Heschel’s late father, Civil Rights activist, Abraham Joshua Heschel, of blessed memory, Liebling was referring to the rights of all Americans.

But where are the voices of the rest America’s faith leaders? And what of faith leaders in Canada and the rest of the world? As a Canadian, I am all too aware that my country is not immune from the venomous hatred of white supremacists. The US Catholic bishops have spoken out in very clear terms condemning the rising tide of racism that resulted in the ugly rally. But where are the voices of the liberal Protestant social gospel tradition that have so easily found the words to criticize Israel over the complexity of the last 50 years in the West Bank?

A recent article in “The Atlantic” reveals that some faith leaders belonging to this group have been crystal clear in their condemnation, connecting white supremacy and asking their followers to rebuke it “in the name of Jesus.” Others have been oddly vague, if not veering on tepid. They speak of hope and love without condemning the hate. While some Evangelical pastors have not even mentioned the words “racism” or “white supremacy,” others (the Southern Baptists) have referred to the alt-right white-supremacist ideologies as “the anti-Christ and satanic to the core.” No mention of a response from the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints (Mormon) was included in the article.But where are the voices of the rest America’s faith leaders? And what of faith leaders in Canada and the rest of the world? As a Canadian, I am all too aware that my country is not immune from the venomous hatred of white supremacists. The US Catholic bishops have spoken out in very clear terms condemning the rising tide of racism that resulted in the ugly rally. But where are the voices of the liberal Protestant social gospel tradition that have so easily found the words to criticize Israel over the complexity of the last 50 years in the West Bank?

The “Atlantic” article referred only to Christian voices. It is essential that leaders of all faiths — Jewish (of all denominations) Muslim, Buddhist, Hindu, Baha’i, Sikh and Indigenous speak out. Make no mistake. We cannot afford to be insipid, nor can we abandon God with our silence. Don’t wait for miracles. The responsibility to speak out and to act is ours.

2015-01-17-HeschelandKingatSelma-thumb

Rabbi Abraham Joshua Heschel at Selma (front row second from right)

In 1963, when President Kennedy invited Abraham Joshua Heschel to the White House, he sent the following telegram: “Please demand of religious leaders personal involvement, not just solemn declaration. We forfeit the right to worship God as long as we continue to humiliate Negroes. Church and synagogue have failed. They must repent. Ask of religious leaders to call for national repentance and personal sacrifice … The hour calls for moral grandeur and spiritual audacity.”

That hour is once again upon us. It is time for all faith leaders to speak out strongly unified by a call to action. A renewed call for repentance and personal sacrifice. A renewed call for moral grandeur and spiritual audacity.

Belle Jarniewski has chaired the Freeman Family Foundation Holocaust Education Centre of the Jewish Heritage Centre of Western Canada since 2008. Since 2013, she has served on the federally appointed delegation to IHRA—the International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance. She is also the current President of the Board of Directors of the Manitoba Multifaith Council. 

Bigotry, hatred, and viciousness takes on a new meaning.

No where in the world can one match the bigotry, hatred, and viciousness of the antisemite. As Jews, we can clearly identify with the memories of our friends in the Rwandan Tutsi community. Their issues are our issues. Holocaust and genocide and the pure lust of slaughtering children and adults by the perpetrators must never be forgotten.
The following article explains in part how western media and NGOs today, twenty-three years after the 1994 genocide, have begun to explain the Rwandan genocide against Tutsi. The article’s content is alarming.

The Underlying Racism behind Western Media’s Anti-Rwanda Hysteria.

Dayo Ntwari JIN August 3

by Dayo Ntwari

The implicitly racist language with which western media and “NGOs” spread their anti-Rwanda hate, the closer Rwanda gets to the 2017 presidential elections is deeply disturbing. There is a lie that is being pushed in western media, one of an alleged “climate of fear” in Rwanda. As I have said before on Twitter, there’s definitely a climate of fear. But it’s not in Rwanda. There’s a climate of fear about Rwanda. The fear that Rwanda will continue to rise. Nobody’s done more damage to Africa in modern times than these “progressive” Westerners of the Economist, HRW & Amnesty school of “thought”. The fear about Rwanda is that our country is increasingly a symbol of inspiration on our continent. An example of a break from chronic subjugation. So when you’ve got a government in Rwanda that puts Rwandan interests first and will NOT be another African vassal state, OF COURSE western colonialist interests will fear this.

This video clip tweeted by The Economist follows the same racist footsteps. A central lie about President Paul Kagame is presented as fact: “Why are his people so frightened of him?”

In usual fashion, the Economist attempts to downgrade President Kagame’s respectability, by referring to him as “Kagame”, instead of “President Kagame”. This happens with all African leaders who don’t toe the Western line. You rarely see an American or European head of state not addressed along with their title, in western reporting. This chauvinistic ignoring of political/governmental roles is reserved for Africans and other dark-skinned folks of the “Global South”.

rwandaOne of the more glaring displays of how much the Economist despises Rwandans can be seen in the Economist’s attempt to minimize the Genocide Against the Tutsi: “Genocide of more than half a million people.The majority were Tutsis, but many moderate Hutu were also killed.”It’s come down to half a million now? Each year, I observe how western media takes a hundred thousand off the number of victims of the Genocide against the Tutsi. One day, they will tell us only three people were killed in the Genocide, and they will stop calling it a genocide, all together.

genocide rwandaNext, the Economist presents a single African voice who regurgitates the desired narrative about Rwanda: the ex-Prime Minister of Rwanda. First the Economist tries to convince you of the ex-Prime Minister’s credibility: the ex-PM tells you he lost 30 family members during the Genocide against the Tutsi. You are now expected to take everything else that comes out of his mouth as the incontestable truth. The Ex-PM then tells us (from his house in Belgium), that we Rwandans are living in tyranny here in Rwanda. He claims it’s a dictatorship, no freedom of speech, etc.

The Economist attempts to manufacture an image of President Kagame as a warlord. This is imagery that the Western audience is most familiar with, when talking about Africans with a military background: warlord, child soldiers, etc. The Economist tells you Pres. Kagame “has kept the peace at home, even as he’s pursued wars against neighbouring Congo.” No further elaboration is provided. A B-roll of supposedly African IDPs or refugees is played in the clip. That’s it. But what wars? What were the wars about? No further explanation. This just serves to flesh out the portrait of this African “tyrant” who wakes up in the morning and goes to war, simply because it is in his nature. That is the prevailing Western view about Africans. We are savages, because without the aid and approval of our white masters, we have no option but to sink into animal savagery. The insidiousness of the White Saviour Industrial Complex, is how it couches this deeply racist dogma inside seemingly caring and benevolent narrative.

Next up in the video clip, “Paul Collier Prof. of Economics – Oxford University”. This snippet from the professor is meant to prevent you from recognizing the fundamental malice in the Economist’s narratives against Rwanda. Prof. Collier tells us President Kagame has had his biggest success in “the reduction of mass poverty, which has been quite exceptional by African standards.” This is simply not true. Nevermind the condescension behind the phrasing “by African standards”. Poverty reduction rates in Rwanda have been exceptional by WORLDstandards! Not just “African standards”. According to a 2013 report, by Prof. Collier’s very same Oxford University’s poverty and human development initiativeRwanda is among the “star performers” in poverty reduction levels, and identified as a place “where deprivation could disappear within the lifetime of present generations.” Tyranny? A media house of the West, where the wealth gap is an ever-widening chasm, where the richest 1% own as much as the rest of the planet combined, will have us believe Rwanda is a tyranny.

Well, the Economist continues its paternalistic dismissal of the agency of the Rwandan electorate, by framing the Kigali Convention Center as an epitome of “Kagame’s economic vision for Rwanda”. As, if we Rwandans are a mass of 12 million helpless children who are suffering at the mercy of a single man’s whim. Not once does the Economist acknowledge even in passing, that ours is a collective vision for our country. According to the Economist we probably don’t even understand what the word economy means, and therefore The Economist is here to save us from our own ignorance, right?

The Economist goes on to state that “some economists now talk of the Rwandan miracle.” This is immediately followed by presenting once again the “exiled” former PM of Rwanda: who is quick to remind us that “Kagame’s rule is based on tyranny. There is no freedom of speech”. You will hear this a lot, “freedom of speech” as the allegedly universal yardstick of a country’s level of democracy. There is freedom of speech in the United States, however the U.S. has the planet’s largest prison population, by far the planet’s largest military budgets and is at any given point engaged in dozens of wars and proxy-wars under the nebulous umbrella of the so-called War on Terror.

To the Economist, the ex Rwandan PM’s baseless accusations supersede all that anyone of us 12 million Rwandans have to say. The ex-PM’s unfounded accusations supersede any established statistics and facts presented, be they from Oxford University, the UN, World Bank or anybody else. No. This one guy here … actually he’s in Belgium in “exile”, is trying to convince us here in Rwanda that we’re all blind and stupid and just don’t understand we’re living in “tyranny”.

The Economist continues, and says the ex-PM “challenged Kagame for the presidency” in 2003 and then states “in the official result, Kagame took 95% of the vote.” Then the Economist claims the victory was rigged. Another lie, presented as fact, with no supporting evidence whatsoever. 2003 were the first presidential elections in Rwanda since the Genocide against the Tutsi. And the Economist appears to be somehow shocked that the man behind the liberation of Rwanda from Genocide, when the whole world turned their backs on us and left us to die, got 95% of the vote? It’s like claiming Jay-Z rigged record sales because he sold tons more records than Lil Mama.

This is quickly followed by the ex-PM telling you how living in Belgium, away from Rwanda, has affected him psychologically. This is meant to shore up further sympathy for the ex-PM and make you malleable to swallowing his claims without any scrutiny. This poor guy, he’s sitting with his laptop in Belgium, thinking about us and missing us so much. Awww, poor guy, hm? He states he “must live freely in his country”. Well, if that is his genuine wish, why not hop on the next RwandAir flight back to Kigali, instead of trolling us from afar and being a puppet of neocolonialist lies against Rwanda?

The Economist tells us that “in reality Rwanda is a one-party state”. Yet another lie, presented as truth, with no further explanation or evidence. Here The Economist also lies by omission. It conveniently omits the easily verifiable fact that in Rwanda’s Constitution, under Article 62, it is stated clearly

“a political organisation holding the majority of seats in the Chamber of Deputies cannot have more than fifty (50%) percent of Cabinet members”.

So, a multi-party system is explicitly guaranteed by our Constitution. The only time The Economist even mentions our Constitution is to allege that in 2015 the RPF “ushered through a constitutional change which could in theory allow him to remain as president until 2034.” Notice the language used here: “constitutional change”. You see, in the framework of the White Saviour Industrial Complex, the following mental acrobatics are always adhered to:

“constitutional amendment” = perfectly normal process in White people democracy
“constitutional change” = African savages living in tyranny

The Economist commits another lie by omission: they don’t tell you that the amendments to the Rwandan Constitution came by a national referendum. Again, the perpetual outright rejection of the political agency and self-determination of an African people. The White Saviour Industrial Complex did not authorize our national referendum, therefore it must be considered null and void.

Again, Prof. Collier of Oxford gives his opinion in which he implies Rwanda is an autocracy. No evidence to support this is provided, and by doing so you are expected to assume this is so trivial a fact, it is so obvious it needs no verbose provision of supporting evidence. The white man said Rwanda is an autocracy, so it must be true.

Towards the end of this racist video clip, the Economist refers to our government as a “regime”. This is a standard approach by Western media when talking about any government in the so-called Global South that does not dance to the tune of the Masters of the so-called Global North.

“administration” = your govt is either a Western govt, or useful to the West, but not likely useful to you.

“regime” = your govt is useful to you, but not useful to the West.

There is a deep and casual implicit racism in the narrative peddled by the likes of the Economist and other “well-meaning” pseudo-progressive Western outlets. And this implicit racism is easily identifiable in the language used when describing the people of the African continent. These Western faux-liberal media houses call our leaders “strongman”“despot”,“tyrant”. They call our governments “regime”“junta”“militia”“rebels”. They tell you our political systems are “autocratic”“dictatorial”“tyrannical”, and that our countries are under a “climate of fear”, and “repression”. They tell you the so-called opposition is “imprisoned”“murdered”“exiled” and so on.

This deeply racist language comes from a historically colonialist mindset: the African is an animal incapable of viable human life, unless he is uplifted and controlled by the Western hand. This colonialist mindset that has been perpetuated since Europeans first came to the African continent to exploit and subjugate its peoples, this racist wannabe-progressive narrative will never change until the Western mind is fundamentally decolonized.

Publisher’s Comment: The above article written by Dayo Ntwari and republished in full, can be viewed on Mr. Ntwari website