A.LOEWENSTEIN ONLINE NEWSLETTER

NOVANEWS


Who knew that occupation caused Muslims to hate us?
20 Oct 2010

Robert Pape tells us what we should already know. When the West occupies and kill Muslims, they may want to respond in kind. Funny that:

More than 95 percent of all suicide attacks are in response to foreign occupation, according to extensive research that we conducted at the University of Chicago’s Project on Security and Terrorism, where we examined every one of the over 2,200 suicide attacks across the world from 1980 to the present day. As the United States has occupied Afghanistan and Iraq, which have a combined population of about 60 million, total suicide attacks worldwide have risen dramatically — from about 300 from 1980 to 2003, to 1,800 from 2004 to 2009. Further, over 90 percent of suicide attacks worldwide are now anti-American. The vast majority of suicide terrorists hail from the local region threatened by foreign troops, which is why 90 percent of suicide attackers in Afghanistan are Afghans.

Myopic Jews berate IAJV for caring about human rights
20 Oct 2010

Following the Australia-wide advertisement by Independent Australian Jewish Voices (IAJV) calling for a more open debate over Israel/Palestine, the following letters have appeared in the Australian Jewish News over the last weeks:

What a dismay to find Independent Australian Jewish Voices’ advertisement in last week’s AJN.
We do live in a democracy where anyone has freedom of expression. However, it is beyond comprehension that this group could even suggest deconstructing vital security systems designed to keep Israel as safe as possible. The very idea that they would ask us to pressure the Australian government with their views is ill-conceived. Such pressures can only incite further anti-Semitism. The protective policies have been designed to safe-guard their relatives who have chosen to live in Israel.
Israel is not just a memorial to the Holocaust as implied in the ad. Israel stands for the present and future existential future existence of the Jewish people. Israel cannot afford the luxury of complacency. It must stay vigilant. Our turbulent past has taught us that.
Rosie Hersch
Brighton East, Vic

“ENOUGH is enough”. This is the title of a large advertisement in The Australian, signed by the Independent Australian Jewish Voices (IAJV).
Now I am returning the same title to them. Everybody is entitled to their opinions, but to advertise it in newspapers is to me a cowardly way to do so.
It has been shown on TV many times how people on the flotilla attacked the Israeli soldiers with iron bars and other tools. They were warned in advance that they were in foreign waters and that they should turn back. One of their answers was: “Jews, go back to Auschwitz”. Didn’t the members of the IAJV notice it? I wonder how would they react in such a situation.

With the rise of the anti-Semitism around the world, does embattled Israel need this?
Only citizens who live in their own country have the right to criticise it. Why do those academics not advertise Israel’s courageous medical achievements in Haiti, or the fact that this tiny country accepted refugees from Darfur, or that Israel’s army is the only army in the world that tried to warn their enemies about forthcoming bombardments? I do not recall Hamas doing so before sending rockets to Sderot.

My Jewishness has always been and will remain to be a source of pride, in spite of the fact that I lived through the Holocaust and lost my entire family.

Helen Lepere
Elsternwick, Vic
 

Invade, beg, pay
20 Oct 2010

Is the British rule that massive aid to poor countries can mostly come after a disastrous Western invasion and occupation?

Britain is to double to £3.8bn the amount of aid money spent on war-torn countries such as Afghanistan, raising fears among charities that national security priorities will determine development spending.
As David Cameron warned that Britain would be “mad” not to direct money to broken states, Save the Children warned that poor, but stable, countries in Africa might lose vital funds as the new National Security Council prioritises aid spending. Patrick Watt, Save the Children’s director of development, said last night: “What is the real driver of aid allocation? Is it poverty, is it need and the ability to use money effectively or is it the agenda of the National Security Council? We do need to have a balanced approach to aid allocation that reflects the principles of the 2002 International Development Act which stipulates that all aid should be for poverty reduction.”
An Oxfam policy adviser also expressed concerns about aid being delivered through “military structures” that could risk civilian aid workers.
The row broke out after the government decided, in the strategic defence and security review, to double by 2014 the £1.9bn that is spent on what are known as “fragile and conflicted states”. This echoes the thinking of Andrew Mitchell, the international development secretary, who told the Guardian in January: “We would build on what [the Department for International Development] is today and make it even more successful and perhaps wire it in a little bit better into the Whitehall constellation.”
It is understood that the government is planning to narrow the list of priority fragile countries, which currently includes Nigeria and Kenya, to just five. They are expected to be Afghanistan, Pakistan, Yemen, Somalia and Iraq.

 

Back on ABC TV News24 talking Afghanistan, drugs policy and 9/11
20 Oct 2010

I appeared again last night on ABC TV News 24 The Drum with former politician Kerry Chikarovski and ABC journalist Chris Uhlmann (previous appearances here). The show is available here for two weeks.
We discussed Australia’s role in Afghanistan and whether the country should maintain troops there. It appears that the US alliance and “national security” reasons are enough for an open-ended commitment despite serious negotiations already occurring with the “enemy”. Staying in a war “to get the job done”, as our major political leaders say, is deeply embarrassing and parochial. At least independent Andrew Wilkie and the Greens are calling for a rational withdrawal. Propping up a corrupt and illegitimate government in Kabul is a strange and immoral way to back Washington.
A leading Victorian unionist said yesterday that he believed 9/11 was an inside job and not orchestrated by Osama Bin Laden. Kevin Bracken was dismissed on TV as a conspiracy nut but I argued that there has never been a robust investigation of the September 11 attacks and though I didn’t believe the Bush administration was behind the outrages the general public doesn’t know the full story of that fateful day.
Finally, the issue of an open and frank debate about drugs in society was canvassed. Surely the question of decriminalisation should be addressed, as the Portuguese example is an inspiring model. The current path, with soaring drug problems due to illegalities, isn’t working.
US TV viewers get small taste of Zionist madness
20 Oct 2010

America’s 60 Minutes ventured into East Jerusalem last weekend and offered insulated foreigners what the West is funding; racist discrimination in the name of Judaism: 
Aussie Zionist lobby comically tries to help clueless union
20 Oct 2010

While growing numbers of global unions are showing solidarity with Palestinians calling for BDS, a few groups prefer to ignore the elephant in the room; the occupation. How to manage it? It doesn’t exist. History will record who stood tall against oppression and who equivocated:

An Australian version of the British organisation, Trade Unions For Israel (TUFI), will be launched during a mission by seven local unionists to Israel and the West Bank later this month.
The delegation, comprising union leaders from Sydney, Melbourne, Adelaide and Perth, will meet with Members of the Knesset, representatives of Israel’s trade union roof body Histadrut, officials of the Palestinian General Federation of Trade Unions (PGFTU), and media commentators.
TUFI convenor Michael Borowick said the new group will be pursuing similar principles at a local level to Trade Unions Linking Israel and Palestine.
Borowick, the assistant secretary of the Australian Workers Union’s Victorian branch, said TUFI was conceived during a meeting with a British union official in May.
TUFI was established in Britain to promote Israeli-Palestinian trade union co-operation and strengthen the links between the Israeli, Palestinian and British trade union movements.
The idea for a British TUFI was inspired by an historic agreement in 2008 between the Histadrut and the PGFTU to base future relations on negotiation, dialogue and joint initiatives. It has led other agreements between unions representing major sectors, such as transport and construction, in the intertwined Israeli and Palestinian economies.
“It seemed there was a need to refocus on trade unions because there are a lot of supporters of Israel within the [Australian] trade union movement and there has been a specific initiative to channel that interest,” Borowick told The AJN.
Borowick said the inaugural TUFI mission from Australia will be in two parts, with TUFI UK hosting the Australians for four days, after which a further five-day itinerary will be provided by the Australia/Israel & Jewish Affairs Council.
“We’re trying to match up unions from here with their equivalent in Israel, and we’re meeting the PGFTU officials in the West Bank,” he said.
Borowick last month slammed a decision by the Victorian Trades Hall Council to endorse local boycott, divestment and sanctions (BDS) activities at a time when Israelis and Palestinians are in peace talks, and trade union contacts are rapidly developing.

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