The best of 2012

31 December 2012

Highlights of a productive year

Happy New Year from Five Minutes for IsraelA special thank you to those who have stuck with Five Minutes for Israel over the last year, especially those who shared and provided feedback. It can be lonely on the Blog.

Over the last year Five Minutes for Israel has produced full articles, many action items for immediate attention and some graphics. As the year draws to a close I thought that selecting what IMHO were the highlights was in order. Unfortunately many of the issues repeat themselves. So they are still a valuable resource against the Israel Haters. Most are full articles and one graphic. If you didn’t read them when they were published perhaps you might like to read them now.

I am not an antisemite Where have all the Jew Haters gone?
How many times have you heard this mantra  from one of the Destroy Israel Lobby –  ”Criticism of Israel is not antisemitism”? Apart from those Islamists/Muslims/Arabs who have no problem with Kill the Jews! are there any Jew Haters left?
Expedited BBC Not exactly an answer from the BBC
Way back on the 8th of November, 2011 I submitted a complaint about  Israel boards protest boats taking medical aid to Gaza. A boat supposedly carrying medical supplies to Gaza that when stopped by the IDF didn’t carry any. I felt, that if the BBC journalist didn’t know this at the time, four days was plenty of time to update the report.The BBC has developed quite a reputation for a Byzantine complaints procedure almost as user unfriendly as its online search engine. Still, this time they did send a form letter, taking four months not the 10 working days of receiving them they promise for most complaints. :-( That in itself is a cause for complaint.
Dervla’s Delusions This is not an Irish joke
Dervla Murphy is an 80 year old Irish touring cyclist and veteran author of adventure travel books. In truth, I had never heard of her until her open letter to the Republic of Ireland President, Michael Higgin, Michael, reject this invitation  began to circulate the Internet.From what I have heard about the anti Israel and anti American delusions of the new Irish President I am far from sure I am all that unhappy if he takes Murphy’s advice and stays away. There is little doubt that Murphy is preaching to the choir, here. On the other hand, her letter contains so much of the delusions and obsessions of the Irish Destroy Israel Lobby that it really should be answered in detail.
One of a set Nothing we want or use
A poster from the BDS is making the rounds (hat tip Jews News). It essentially lists major brands with Israel connections†, such as CNN, Coca Cola, IBM, Calvin Klein, MacDonalds. It is difficult to understand what BDS hopes to gain by news organisations boycotting Israel, even those like the BBC who do it from a distinctly anti Israel point-of-view,  but logic and a firm grasp of reality is not known as BDS characteristics.Still, it occurred to me that a counter poster listing Palestinian products to boycott is in order. That posed a problem.
Wikipedia holidays in Eilat How libels are manufactured
It’s somewhat ironic, that I am writing during Pessah (Passover) the Jewish festival commemorating the return of the Jews from slavery in Egypt. My friend, Ruth Landesman from Eilat brought this paragraph in Wikipedia to my attention. If you thought the war with Egypt over boundaries ended with the Taba decision in 1989, guess again. Now they want Eilat!
Five Minutes for Israel The troublemaker option The legal basis for keeping the Flytilla out
Tomorrow is the big day. Millionshundreds of thousands, maybe hundreds but probably tens of Israel haters will try to make a statement by disrupting Ben Gurion Airport to publicise an issue the media has totally ignored has covered until all reasonable people are saying, not again. Israel will do her best to keep them out, preferably by seeing they won’t leave their ports of embarkation.As previously, they will claim that Israel has a legal, democratic and moral obligation to allow them in. This is a yet another sign of Israel’s uniqueness. No one else will let them in, either. Every other Western state reserves the right to exclude those who enter the country to cause it damage. I call it the troublemaker option.
Palestinian dichotomy When is a Palestinian Not a Palestinian? Arab or Palestinian
Do the Palestinians exist? I say, yes. Sometimes
We all seen it. The battle lines are drawn. The Destroy Israel Lobby claims that the Palestinians have been around for ever. They have to say that, to trump three thousand years of Jewish claims. They present the Palestinians as the indigenous inhabitants, as if the world is so kind to the genuine indigenous.
  Perfidious Albion There may never be peace but let’s at least have clarity
This a reply to Tom Phillips, former ambassador to both Israel and Saudi Arabia’s lead article in Prospect Magazine July 18, 2012†. While I may in the end agree with his conclusion, there are so many dubious assertions, trite assertions, blindness and plain wishful thinking here that the conclusion may be less important than the path he took to reach it. Patience. This is a long reply to a long article.
  Ultra Poverty Haredi poverty IS an Israel advocacy issue
Equal service in the IDF is a poverty issue. Have I ever written about the Haredim* (ultra-orthodox) in Israel? Aside from the marginal Neturei Karta of course, but it their abuse of their as-a-Jew status rather than their financial status that annoys me and if you believe their rhetoric they don’t take anything from the state†. It comes in response to Higher education for Haredim by Prof. Yoran Zalicha, in Israel Hayom dating back to July 22. My response to this article has been much delayed but the problem doesn’t go away even if the original has long found its ultimate role, wrapping fish. No disrespect intended. That, or something similar, is the fate of every newspaper.The professor’s contention can really be summed up in one sentence. Haredim in Ono Academic College Faculty of Business Administration, of which he is dean, do really well. Therefore the failure of the Haredi educational sector to provide adequate education in secular subjects is easily surmountable for adults and the state (that is, essentially the taxpayers who already by definition have jobs) have an obligation to make up for this Haredi failure.
  Dollars & Sense Thank you very much but we don’t need it, anymore!
Isn’t it time to refuse American Foreign Aid?

Here’s a radical thought. Israel receives about $US3.2 billion each year from the US Foreign Aid budget. Let’s tell them, Thank you very much but we don’t need it, anymore!

  Economics of Intifada Why the Palestinian economy sucks
As so often on the Internet, this started with a video gone viral. When I first saw it shared, I thought don’t these people know the Daily Show is supposed to be satire. Then the second came and the third. I began asking myself a question. Don’t they care that Jon Stewart is a comedian and then it hit me. Doesn’t Jon Stewart care that he is producing material that follows the complete Palestinian line and can and will be used to attack the Jewish state?
  Corrie-and-her Appropriating the Holocaust
Rachel Corrie is not Anne FrankIf Anne Frank (b.1929) was alive in  2003 she most likely would have been a grandmother in Israel worrying about the safety of her grandson fighting the fascists whom Rachel Corrie died to protect. About seventy-five per cent (75%) of Jews in Holland perished at the hands of the Nazis and Dutch collaborators and after the war, for a period, Dutch Jews were the largest Western aliya group. Even had she not come to Israel, she would have recognised Hamas’s genocidal language, immediately.So equating Anne Frank with Rachel Corrie does serve to leave a very bad taste in one’s mouth. The court decision in Haifa that Rachel Corrie was entirely responsible for her early demise has contributed to many efforts to beatify her. Still the comparison with Anne Frank was a new one. At least to me. perhaps it shouldn’t have been. Anne in a keffiya has already made her appearance.
  Juxtaposition – so it must be true If it was true, would it matter?
Speak of the Devil and he shows his face – or two faces. No sooner than I completed the Corrie-and-her article about using juxtaposition to imply a connection where there is none when the following juxtaposition hit Facebook. Naturally, it was claimed to show how the Israel Defence Force are Nazis.
All wet in Gaza The BBC gets it wrong again
Aquaponics may have a big future in Gaza. But the BBC in Growing vegetables without soil on Gaza’s rooftops manages to cram two demonstrable falsehoods into one colour piece and still manage to pad it out with anti-Israel sniping pretending to be journalism.Gaza is NOT ‘one of the most densely populated areas in the world’
The BBC prefers blondes More dubious photography on BBC website
When the BBC distributes a Pallywood photo opportunity, do they do this blindly or do they really not have a clue?There must be a warm place in hell for parents who push their own children into confrontation with armed soldier for a Pallywood photo-op. Right next to the BBC editor who thinks nothing of publishing this piece of child abuse.
Throwing punches at Klitschko Boxing–Gaza analogy
There’s a war going on. I guess I don’t have to remind you and much of the discussion is only clichés. Israel doesn’t use disproportionate force†.  Some casualties are innocent victims but most are not‡. Much of the criticism can be condensed down to labeling Israel a big bully or worse, a murdering, evil, big bully.Trying to explain this to some of the people I’m forced to debate is like explaining algebra to a five-year old. And when caught with unanswerable facts or logic the Palestinian Two-Step surfaces. We need an analogy that even intellectually challenged ‘supporters’†† of the Palestinians can understand. So I have developed the Klitschko Analogy.
Good for America Investment not aid
With the Pillar of Defence† operation continuing for its fifth day expect more moral relativity articles like Israel and Palestinians get billions in foreign aid from the US, but for different reasons Briefly summarising: the GlobalPost article notes Israel has received more foreign aid than Palestine and receives it as military rather than economic support and social services the Palestinians. BAD, BAD … BADIn Dollars & Sense I raised the argument for giving up on American aid could be in Israel’s interest. In my reply to the GlobalPost article I show the nature of foreign aid why, at least in the Israeli case, it’s an investment that benefits America. How many other aid recipients can say that?
Five Minutes for Israel A course in map reading II Four maps & fivesix, seven … lies
Five Minutes for Israel is on such a roll with maps after A course in map reading I: How the BBC mapped the conflict and Sometimes you need proportion: Rocket and mortar range to your town that I have decided to analyse another very well-known set of maps. Treat it as a resource they will resurface, usually with some sort of label that this is the truth no one will publish.
Why ROR sounds like ROAR Israel and the Arab Right of Return I was asked an apparently serious question why Israel objects to the Palestinian Right of Return. This was my extended answer.
  Cognitiva disjunctione pro ChristianisCognitive Dissonance for Christians … and not a little for the Jews
How is it possible that while Christians are being raped, murdered, kidnapped, forced to change religion, their churches burnt and their property stolen in virtually all Muslim countries yet the official bodies of the Church, Protestant and Catholic, think punishing Israel for the temerity to build in the territories is the real issue?How is it possible that all those things are happening yet it is local Palestinian Christians and church financed NGOs that are providing the ammunition for the attack? Could church support for BDS be their way of avoiding the cognitive dissonance that the groups they support really hate them?That the one state the church does boycott is the one state that is Jewish is surely a coincidence?
Soccer Mickey Red Card Mickey Mouse petition
An online petition which had gained a total of  4,844 signatures† in apparently six months should have been a non-story became a story when the Guardian’s Chris McGreal made it one.  He wroteFootballers condemn plans to hold U21 European championship in Israel. It became a much bigger story when CiF Watch noted that Two footballers cited by Chris McGreal as endorsers of anti-Israel petition flatly deny signing it. Perhaps someone might have the time to email all the footballers and ask if their signatures are authentic but as the list is overwhelmingly Muslim players it is not impossible. Some could quite well say they would have signed had they known.
Don’t let al Salaymeh become al Dura Don’t give the narrative away
In any other context a policewoman who shot someone sticking a gun into the face of a fellow officer would be saluted as a hero. In any other context a person who pointed a replica pistol at soldiers/police armed with real firearms would be a prime candidate for the Darwin Awards
Top Conspiracy Theory 2012 Even by Press TV standards …
Even by Press TV‘s nonexistent standards the accusation that Israel was responsible for the massacre in Newtown, Connecticut was far-fetched. But it is getting some play on the Internet so it’s important to have some background on the authors and sources. As way of disclaimer, Five Minutes for Israel has no information on the actual details of this terrible tragedy and only the deepest sympathy for its victims. We are attacking the messenger.

About David Guy

B.A./B.C.A. (Communication and Media Arts) University of Wollongong, AUSTRALIA M.A. in Government (Diplomacy and Conflict Studies) Inter Disciplinary Center, Herzliya, ISRAEL Twitter @5MFI
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