Wednesday, August 02, 2006

Zionist meeting: Israel-Hezbollah, a backgrounder

Approximately 320 people attended an Auckland meeting the other night hosted by the Zionist Federation of NZ -- a friend who attended sent me this [slightly edited] account.

I was most impressed with the calibre of both speakers -- Professor Dov Bing (left) (Dept of Political Science & Public Policy, University of Waikato), and Jeremy Jones (right with Pope John Paul) (Order of Australia and current Director of International & Community Affairs at AIJAC) -- together with the questions at the end from members of the audience.

The tone of the meeting was rational, measured and pleasantly free of emotive rhetoric.

Background:

• Israel is surrounded by 22 Arab states, ALL of which are dictatorships.
• Those Arab states lack real investment and 'national development'; their money is poured instead into military & secret services.
• Partly as a result, all those Arab economies are ‘calcified’ in comparison with their western counterparts, and with Israel.
• There is virtually no transfer of knowledge from western to Arab states.

• It is essential to understand the serious and bitter rivalry, and the power struggle between Arab Shi-ites and Sunnis.
• Iran is predominantly Shi-ite; Iraq is 67% Shi-ite; Lebanon 40% Shi-ite.
• Egypt, Jordan, West Bank & Gaza predominantly Sunni.
• Jordan & Egypt both have peace treaties with Israel.
• Al Qaeda is predominantly Sunni, sepcifically Wahhabi Sunni (but anti-US at the same time).
• In Israeli opinion however, Shi-ites are the most dangerous sect: following Ayatollah Khomenei's Shi'ite Islamic Revolution, Iran is dominant in this movement, it uses Syria & Lebanon.
• The Sunni states initially denounced Hezbollah, (see for example the editorial in Kuwait’s ‘Arab Times’, 23 July, posted here at Not PC.)

• Iran's sabre rattling, and the present aggression by Hezbollah are part of a power struggle to assert Shi'ite dominance in the Arab World and enter an era of ‘Ascendancy of Shi-ites’, despite being a minority in the Islamic world. That is what is the motivation for the present conflict.

Current Situation:

• Israel has been accused of inflicting ‘disproportional’ casualties despite being enormously outnumbered.
• Hezbollah's policy is to attack civilians. The Israeli modus operandi by contrast is to attack military targets, which results in civilian casualties. There is a difference.
• Hezbollah's policy of shooting at civilians makes it morally difficult for one’s enemy to respond.
• Western journalists are generally anti-Israel. Bing and Jones accuse most of ‘intellectual laziness’ in terms of there being historically ignorant … ‘not doing their homework.’
• There is a supreme irony they say in western left-wingers supporting Hezbollah, who are a fascist, imperial, genocidal, racist movement.
• The reality of what Israel faces in this conflict is this statement by Shi-ite Hezbollah leader Hassan Nasrallah, Oct 2002: "If all the Jews gathered in Israel, it’ll save us the job of going after them worldwide."
• 22 August is a big date on Islamic calendar: the anniversary of 'Mohammed’s ascension to Heaven.' Iran has promised to "light up Israeli skies" (whatever the hell that might mean).
• UN peace initiative? Southern Lebanon has been under the eyes of UNIFIL (UN Interim Force in Lebanon) since 1978 – and yet it’s the most densely armed spot on the planet!
• The Lebanese government contains members of Hezbollah, 14 seats out of 128. In addition, an Amal-Hezbollah alliance won all 23 seats in Southern Lebanon.

• A good place to start for reading the history of the area is the book 'A Peace to End All Peace' about the dissolution of the old Ottoman Empire that produced the present map of the Middle East, and effectively sold present-day Israel twice: once to Jews and once to Palestinians.
• Ceasefires in the Middle East do not work; they simply give aggressors time to re-arm.
• Wars only end when one side gives up its aims. The aim of Arab aggressors since 1948 has been to drive Israel and Israelis into the sea. Iran's President Ahmedinejad's promise to wipe Israel off the map is only a contemporary re-wording of the long-standing aim, and the long-standing refusal to recognise any right for Israel right to exist.

• Democracies never fight democracies; as Dr Wafa Sultan explained so eloquently in this TV interview, true ‘civilisations’ don’t clash – they compete
• Hezbollah is a multi-billion dollar enterprise currently funded by Iran. It is not being funded out of altruism.
• Hezbollah also extorts money from Christian Lebanese who are forced to pay ‘huge amounts’ every day not to be terrorised. In Chicago and New Jersey, they call this 'protection money.'
• The Russian situation is interesting: on the one hand they have their own problems with Moslem Chechnya, whilst they are simultaneously arming both Iran and Syria.

Both Professor Bing and Jeremy Jones (an Australian) discussed the difficulty in getting their pro-Israel viewpoints across in the western media (see Bing's May opinion piece in the Herald for example). Bing estimates he has one letter in every three submissions printed. He urged the audience to use the print media to best effect. Jones writes for the AIJAC Review -- here is an example of his writing: 'Leading Lies: Holocaust and Hate.'

UPDATE: Here's another useful link from the good people at the History News Network: What Is the Difference Between Sunni and Shiite Muslims--and Why Does It Matter?

LINKS: Zionist Federation of New Zealand website
Arab Times: 'This war was inevitable...' - Not PC
'A Peace to End All Peace' - Amazon.Com
'Clash of civilizations' rubbished by Arab-American woman
- Not PC
Fermenting of a dangerous brew - Dov Bing, NZ Herald
Leading lies: Holocaust and hate - Jeremy Jones, AIJAC Review
What Is the Difference Between Sunni and Shiite Muslims--and Why Does It Matter? - History News Networks

RELATED:
Israel, History-Modern, War, Politics-World

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4 Comments:

Anonymous Falafulu Fisi said...

I think that the Americans should just leave the Israeli's alone and don't try to lecture them like kids. Condi Rice is tired of doing the round the clock flights to & from the mid-east trying to find a solution. Excellent work by Dr. Rice, but she should get a rest and let do gooders step in. Let the French, the Russians or the EU do that job. Every lefties in NZ berates the American if they think that Don Brash is hiring some ex-Republican campaign strategists to help out National, thinking that National is run from Washington. They say, US don't lecture NZ, we can make up our own policies. However, those same lefties , Keith Locke & the likes are jumping up & down in disgusting and demanded that the US should lecture Israel on the definition of proportional response. It will not take much explanation to a 3 year old boy to point out that all lefties are lunatics.

War is horrible, but as a western journalist comment from the movie "Hotel Rwanda", that quoted "the people in the West will watch this massacre on CNN evening news and be horrified & shocked, but after the news is over, they will go and eat their dinner & forget about it". This is true. Anyone who disagrees with this is a denier. Human have emotions, there is question about it. Whether someone is pro or anti-Israeli, we all see the news and become horrified as we watch innocent deaths, BUT I have not heard anyone who became INSANE and taken to a psychiatric clinic after watching such tragic deaths on CNN. Why you don't find people such as do gooders & lefties (Keith Locke) gone insane about such horrific scenes on CNN ? Because we are still human, once the TV is off, we forget about it and we continue on with our daily life’s as normal.

This is the price of 'altruism' that PC has frequently talked about in his blog here. If the US will try to do something, they are being criticized for interfering. If the US just don't do anything perhaps they (Bush, Rice & others), prefer to watch the situation of the conflict on CNN then going to eat their dinner, again they will be heavily criticized for enjoying their nice meal and their inaction in the middle east.

Perhaps, Dr. Rice would prefer a nice bottle of wine in front of CNN every evening and not getting herself tired of endless days & nights of flights to the mid-east. Let the Israeli & Lebanese sort it out.

8/02/2006 12:18:00 pm  
Blogger Paula said...

Great post!

8/03/2006 01:21:00 am  
Blogger Brewerstroupe said...

A few statistics from http://www.ifamericansknew.org/
121 Israeli children have been killed by Palestinians and 763 Palestinian children have been killed by Israelis since September 29, 2000
1,084 Israelis and 4,126 Palestinians have been killed since September 29, 2000.
7,633 Israelis and 30,563 Palestinians have been injured since September 29, 2000.
The U.S. gives $15,139,178 per day to the Israeli government and military and $232,290 per day to Palestinian NGO’s.
Israel has been targeted by at least 65 UN resolutions and the Palestinians have been targeted by none

1 Israeli is being held prisoner by Palestinians, while 9,599 Palestinians are currently imprisoned by Israel.
0 Israeli homes have been demolished by Palestinians and 4,170 Palestinian homes have been demolished by Israel since September 29, 2000.
60+ new Jewish-only settlements have been built on confiscated Palestinian land between March 2001 and July 11, 2003. There have been 0 cases of Palestinians confiscating Israeli land and building settlements.

8/04/2006 06:53:00 pm  
Anonymous Falafulu Fisi said...

Brewerstroupe said...
[121 Israeli children have been killed by Palestinians and 763 Palestinian children have been killed by Israelis since September 29, 2000]

Your point is ? Why are you bringing out stats that every dog, cockroach, rooster, sheep, goat, 3 year old boy out there already know about ? I might ask you , why & what has started all that ? The reason, is that every fuckin Muslim in the mid-east must leave Israel alone & respect their right to exist then Israel in return will leave them alone.

Brewerstroupe said...
[The U.S. gives $15,139,178 per day to the Israeli government and military and $232,290 per day to Palestinian NGO’s]

Again your point is ? The US government is a sovereing state where it can dish out its money to Israel, Egypt, Samoa, Tonga , Fiji, and anyone elses as it pleases. It is not your money, nor NZ tax payers money nor Palestinian's money. Do you have a problem with the US giving money & weapons to Israel ? If you do , then it is your problem not the US's problem. Got that ? You should waste your air in protesting about the rising rates in Auckland since it affects you. The US is not going to protest to Dick Hubbard, since it has nothing to do with them. Similarly, it is none of your business to concern about how they give their money to any country of their choosing.

Brewerstroupe said...
[Israel has been targeted by at least 65 UN resolutions and the Palestinians have been targeted by none]

Irrelevant. You like the UN don't you? The UN fucked up the world and the US helped out the totalitarian states by removing their leadership to restore democracy.

The reason, that quoted in my last post that I wish the US would just retire from doing diplomacy in order to secure peace (altruism). They can watch the CNN evening news just the same as you here in NZ and everyone around the world. We know what happens when the US is just standing by and does nothing. It is going to be chaos everywhere.

8/05/2006 12:00:00 am  

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