Monday, June 28, 2010

Bleeding Palestine

The Guardian has a story today about how Hamas sometimes kills Palestinians it thinks are collaborating with Israel.

The interesting thing is that the Hamas graffiti in the article portrays all of Israel as bleeding and suffering Palestine, but the Guardian doesn't even notice.

Or maybe they did notice, and approve.


Anonymous said...

Shmuel Rosner has a post on what Human Rights Watch didn't like in Gaza
HRW - I kid you not

4infidels said...


Hope you don't mind that I post my comments regarding an article from the LA Times. The article is essentially about how there is no crisis in Gaza, yet it is typical of the malicious way many stories regarding Israel are written. I had to express my outrage somewhere:

Gaza plight a crisis with a difference


The blockade of Gaza has come under new scrutiny after the raid on the aid flotilla. Although there's no hunger and there are no epidemics, the situation defies usual categorization, officials say.

By Edmund Sanders, Los Angeles Times

4infidels: We have real news to tell you, but we can’t just tell it to you straight, as that would cast a negative light on our prior reporting and the sources we rely on for information. It might also put our reporter in Gaza in danger. The real news is that despite the claims of Palestinian officials, the United Nations and NGO’s, nobody is starving in Gaza and nobody has to go without medicine. That has been the story from the “activists.” And of course, if that claim is false, why should we believe anything else the same sources tell us?

Reporting from Gaza City — Don't ask Hatem Hajaj whether there's a humanitarian crisis in the Gaza Strip.
Four months ago, the unemployed salesclerk's son was born with a heart blockage. Doctors told Hajaj that the baby's only hope was transfer to a Jerusalem hospital because Gaza lacked a pediatric surgery unit.
While his son, Mohamed, fought to breathe on a ventilator, Hajaj spent a week gathering the transfer documents needed under Israel's strict border rules. Then there was another agonizing week, watching as his son's tiny body began to bloat as he waited for an answer.
Approval finally came — two days after Mohamed died.

4infidels: I don’t want to sound like I am indifferent to the death of a baby, but we have seen so many stories like this that ultimately turned out to be untrue that I have my suspicions. Anyway, the real news was that the Palestinians lied about the conditions on the ground in Gaza, but first the LA Times must play with your emotions so that you don’t lose sight of the overriding narrative: Israel is heartless oppressor, indifferent to human life; the Palestinians are as innocent as a helpless, sick baby.

The Palestinian position is that Israel should get the heck out of Gaza, cease to exist, the remaining Jews should all go live somewhere far, far away, and the best way to make that happen would be through a bloody jihad in which the Muslims would slaughter every last Jew. We hate you, we despise you; you have no right to be here and no right to exist. Oh, and did we mention how unfair you are to not give us free medical care whenever we demand it? (In fact, the Israelis provide more free medical care to Palestinians than probably any other people to those determined to annihilate them.)


4infidels said...


"Why should it take so long for a days-old innocent baby with such a serious problem?" asked Hajaj, 37, in his Gaza City home, clutching the medical records and authorization form that came too late. "No crisis? I lost my son. We're not treated like human beings. Let me ask you: Would Israelis accept to live under these conditions?"

4infidels: I tried to do some research on what it would take for a Mexican citizen to get an emergency medical visa to the United States. On a US government website, it said that the same criteria apply for emergency visas as for regular visas, only the process is speeded up. That would mean that the Mexican citizen would have to pay a $135 application fee, have documentation from a doctor, including proof of the appointment, and show proof of the available funds that would be used to pay for the medical services. So I guess an unemployed Mexican isn’t getting emergency medical treatment in the US so easily either. And Mexico isn’t committed to destroying the US.

Israelis wouldn’t accept to live under those conditions as evidenced by the fact that Israel doesn’t elect terrorist groups as its leaders and Israeli pediatricians actually help heal sick children rather than strap bombs onto their bodies and send them to kill other children. With all the MD’s who are leaders of Hamas, I’m sure that Gaza could have a pediatric surgery unit. What about all those billions of dollars in aid? I would think that there would be more than enough money to hire good doctors from elsewhere, if needed? Where are all the good humanitarians (the ones who care so much about the Palestinians) who could take turns working for a few weeks in Gaza?

In the aftermath of the deadly May 31 commando raid on an aid supply flotilla, Israel's 3-year-old blockade of Gaza is coming under unprecedented scrutiny. In addition to the naval cordon, Israel and Egypt maintain tight restrictions on the movement of goods and people over their borders, stopping everything from vinegar to the terminally ill.

4infidels: Yes, but we will only scrutinize Israel. Egypt, being a typical dysfunctional, corrupt and violent third-world Arab country, is beyond criticism. And how would someone who is “terminally ill” benefit from Israeli medical treatment anyway?

Israeli officials defend their policy as necessary to prevent rockets and other weapons from reaching Hamas, the Palestinian armed movement that controls Gaza and refuses to recognize Israel's right to exist. They say the reports of dire conditions in Gaza are exaggerated.

4infidels: This is typical of the verbal gymnastics that reporters play when writing about Israel. “Israeli officials defend” is a slick way to say that Israel is doing something that must be defended and also seems to imply that an Israel official is defending a policy that results in the death of innocent, sick children, given the previous paragraphs.

In fact, the Israeli officials likely restated their policies for journalists and explained the reasons for those policies in general, not as a response to the type of story mentioned above. I was taught that in news stories, that reporter should almost always use “say” or “said” so that you introduce the quoted point of view in a neutral manner.

As for Hamas, a more accurate description would be “a terrorist group committed to Israel’s destruction,” as both their charter and their daily statements confirm that only through violence will the “Zionist entity” cease to exist. Every government is “armed” and there are plenty of countries that don’t recognize Israel’s “right to exist” which should be differentiated from those, such as Hamas, working hard toward causing Israel’s destruction.

4infidels said...


"There is no humanitarian crisis in Gaza," Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said recently in a televised address.

4infidels: And so we finally get to the actual news in the news story!

Experts say it's not so simple. Although it's true that there is no hunger and there are no epidemics, the situation in Gaza defies usual categorization, aid officials say.

4infidels: There is a crisis here, just not what anyone would recognize as a crisis, especially since we have been telling you that people were in need of food and medicine.

"Look, it's not like sub-Saharan Africa," said Chris Gunness, spokesman for the United Nations Relief and Works Agency, which assists Palestinian refugees. "We are not talking about a natural disaster or famine caused by failed rains. But Gaza is a political crisis with grave human consequences."

4infidels: Just not the type of consequences that are faced everywhere that there is a real crisis where the UN could actually do some good. Sure thousands of people die daily from all types of horrors, but those are caused by nature, not by the Jews, like the death of the little boy in the first paragraph. If Hamas and the other Palestinians waging jihad against the infidels in Israel decided they could live in peace with their neighbors, then there wouldn’t be any political crisis.

So although some can argue that Gaza's mortality rates are steadily improving, others could note that more Gazans died during Israel's 22-day military assault 18 months ago than civilians were killed in Darfur during all of 2009.

4infidels: Although people in Gaza have a life expectancy of 73.4 years, well above the world average of 67.2 years, Gaza should be thought of as worse than Darfur and thus Israel as worse than the Arab-Islamist Sudanese government that spent most of the past 3 decade committing genocide, first on its Christian population in the South and more recently on its black Muslims in Darfur. (Sudan’s life expectancy—for the whole country, not just Darfur—is 58.8).

Note also the slight-of-hand comparing everyone killed in a war started by Hamas (of whom the majority of the dead were combatants, not civilians—see British General Richard Kemp on how Israel took more steps to prevent civilian loss of life than any army in the history of warfare) and innocent victims in Darfur who were massacred by jihadists chanting Allahu Akbar.


4infidels said...


Acute malnutrition in Gaza is well below the "emergency" threshold. But at the same time, a higher percentage of Gazans are dependent on food aid than is true of Somalis.

4infidels: That is probably because the UN provides food aid for anyone registered as a Palestinian refugee (the only refugees able to pass refugee states to future generations) whereas most of the world doesn’t have the safety net of aid provided by the international community. This paints a false picture as Gazans have been receiving food aid and medical care from the UN (or from Israel) for 60 years. No crisis.

Health officials report no serious problems with cholera, measles or diarrhea, yet 90% of Gaza's water is so polluted that it's undrinkable, and on average two patients die every month waiting for Israeli permits to leave Gaza for treatment, according to the World Health Organization.

4infidels: Again, no crisis, but not only is the water polluted, but the deaths are the fault of Israel not giving medical treatment. Funny how they have more than enough money for luxury hotels, villas, swimming pools, weapons of every kind, cell phones, satellite TV, DVD stores, internet cafes, etc. Like everywhere else in the Arab world, when it comes to projects that are for the good of the community, like trash collection or clean water, Inshallah (if God wills it), it will happen.

"It's not the kind of disaster that you might see in other places," said Mahmud Daher, head of WHO's Gaza office. "But it's always on the edge of a crisis. And without the help of the international community, it would be a crisis."

4infidels: No, without the help of the international community, you would have to produce your own food (Gaza has a great climate) and not spend all your time plotting the destruction of Israel while others provide your necessities.

Passing through the half-mile Erez checkpoint and emerging into Gaza, the contrast could hardly be more stark. In Israel, there are shopping malls and traffic lights. In Gaza, donkey carts and herds of goats cross the road. Young boys pick through the debris of bombed-out buildings to salvage construction materials.

4infidels: Welcome to the Arab world vs. Israel. The standard of living in Gaza is far above that of the nearby Bedouin in Sinai, Egypt. What you find in Gaza isn’t that different from the rest of the Arab world, except that even less effort is made to fix things up in Gaza because dhimmis like the LA Times will blame it on Israel. If the Western educated engineers can figure out how to get bombs on children and missiles to fire at Israeli schools, they can figure out how to fix traffic lights.

4infidels said...


At the same time, a certain normality has returned. The stores are stocked with food, electronics, furniture and clothin, much of it smuggled from Egypt through illegal tunnels. Cafes offer espresso and croissants. A shipment of 2010 Hyundai sedans recently arrived. Now that school is out for the summer, families are flocking to the beach to eat ice cream and barbecue.

4infidels: Like I said, no crisis. Perhaps some of that generous international aid should go to Haiti…


"A one-month supply of anything here is a real luxury," Ashour said.

4infidels: Right…and then next month, the UN will give you another one-month supply of “anything” you need.

Anyway, the article continues on with all the hardships about life in Gaza caused by the “blockade,” some of which are probably true and and most of which are either false or greatly exaggerated, and all are probably typical of life in any non-oil producing Arab country.
The real news, once again, is that there is no humanitarian crisis in Gaza!!!

Yaacov said...

Hey Four, you forgot to link to the original article....

4infidels said...

Sorry about is the link:

4infidels said...


Just started reading the article you linked by the researcher from HRW when I came across this gem of a sentence:

The Hamas government, trying to shore up its image as an Islamic reform movement in the face of challenges from more radical Islamist groups, is consolidating its social control by upping its efforts to "Islamize" Gaza.

As a branch of the Muslim Brotherhood, isn't Hamas just doing what every local branch of the MB either does or claims it wants to do in areas where it has power of the local population? Hamas is adhering to its beliefs and acting consistently with the values it espoused before it had the ability to impose those values on the population at large. Those in the media and NGO's always take the approach that Muslim behavior that we don't like is a response to outside forces. For example, "who lost Turkey?" Turkey lost Turkey when they elected an Islamic government, which resulted from believing Muslims in the countryside having far more children over the years than did the secular Muslims in the cities.

What the heck does "Islamic reform movement" mean? A movement trying to bring Islam into the 21st century? Hamas is trying to strictly enforce all the Sharia Laws that have been around for centuries, though not always rigidly followed. This seems more like a fundamentalist, regressive or, most accurately, an authoritative approach to Islam than what anyone in the West would connote from the term "reform."

I guess the author could be using a lesser meaning of "reform" which deals with eliminating evil, which fully observant Muslim might think of as getting rid of alcohol or veiling women. That would be quite judgmental though, for as we know, one man's evil is another man's right to eat, drink and speak as he darn pleases. In addition, when Westerners think of reform in the context of religion, they think of the Reformation or Reform Judaism. Again, Hamas and the MB are going in the exact opposite direction from the type of change we associate with a religion reforming.

4infidels said...

Couples walking down the street are routinely stopped, separated and questioned by plainclothes officers asking whether they're married. "You basically have to carry a copy of your marriage license on you at all times, or risk being humiliated," one young couple told us.

If they were asking them for documentation confirming they were in the US legally, Obama would find that outrageous and sue the government as in Arizona. Hamas just gets another $400 million from Obama!

4infidels said...

...It is on the backs of young people like these that the Hamas government, facing discontent from militant religious groups that think it is failing to attack Israel and enforce Sharia, or Islamic law, is seeking to bolster its Islamic credentials.

Given that Islam is a peaceful religion, why do so many Muslims think that the best way to bolster their Islamic credentials is by acting violently toward non-believers?

Again, nothing Hamas is doing should come as a surprise to anyone who has followed the group. Why the need to constantly contextualize Hamas' actions as stemming from a need to show they are more Islamic than the next group?

4infidels said...

The people of Gaza are now prisoners twice over. From the outside, Israel and Egypt have locked down Gaza's borders, forcing at least 900,000 people into poverty and dependence on food handouts

Give me a break. Israel and Egypt have forced 900,000 people into poverty and dependence on food handouts? How many people received food handouts from the UN prior to the "blockade?" Israel's security measure were a reaction to terrorism by the Palestinians...terrorism that followed the Barak-Clinton offers of 2000-2001. Being Palestinian means never being held responsible for your own circumstances.

NormanF said...

Yaacov would agree with me here but if Israel wasn't in the picture, no one would care if Gaza was blockaded. No one would give a damn. There is something about the Jews that stirs the world's righteous wrath when in any other context it would be completely indifferent. The key then is the Jews - not Gaza.

Yaacov said...

Oh come on, Norman. The world noticed when the death toll reached four million in the Congo, a while back, and again when it seemed to be about five million.

On the other hand, when the This dumped a few thousand Burmese refugees in the ocean not long ago, indeed no-one seemed to notice.

4infidels said...

Norman F and Yaacov,

There was a comparison in the article I cited above between the number of civilian deaths in Darfur in 2009 and the total number killed in Israel's war in Gaza. I assumed that violence and deaths in Darfur must have been way down in 2009, though I have no idea.

I did a quick Google search for the info but couldn't find it. On the other hand, everyone knows that 1400 people were supposedly killed by Israel (most assumed by the media to have been civilians, though we know that isn't so).

The reason the writer compares two situations that are completely unrelated is to make people associate Israel with those committing genocide in Darfur, while at the same time knowing that he could only make the ridiculous comparison of numbers in a year that deaths in Darfur were extremely low in comparison to past years. It is thus a double deceitful doing by the writer.

4infidels said...

NormanF and Yaacov,

The writer of the story above also mentions that two Gazans die every month waiting to get travel documents to enter Israel for treatment. Given that there are more than 1.6 million people in Gaza, Israel must be providing lots of people in Gaza with medical care, and thus saving lots of lives that would be lost had those people not been fortunate enough to have Israel on their border.

Given that 45 percent of the population of Gaza is under 15 years old, and given that there is no pediatric surgery unit in Gaza, Israel must be saving lots of young lives as well.

Anonymous said...

as to the 400 mio theme and the kids inheriting the refugee status of their parents

here is a piece on the impact these 400 mio and all the other funds have on the "demographic" question which is looming. It is worth a read - I've listened to Heinsohn quite often and have him heard attacked by guys I thought sound - he has more than one point and the injustice of it all blows my mind regularly:

Ending the West's Proxy War Against Israel
Stop funding a Palestinian youth bulge, and the fighting will stop too.


Anonymous said...

"Would Israelis accept to live under these conditions?"

as of the age of 11 I lived in the city where the US Air Force had it head-quarter, i.e. practically no enlisted men, posh hotels, clubs, huge cars - the idea that we would have a right to the same standard just because they lived amongst us never crossed our mind and it didn't when I had reached dating age and got a chance to see all those gorgeous things up close. My first Bacon, Lettuce and Tomatoe - unforgettable.

Of course we wanted better housing etc but that their higher standard would ENTITLE us to it must be one of the new-fangled ideas of equality gone bananas.

A writer who thinks nothing about putting "vinegar and terminally ill" together in one breath should be asked to undergo some serious ethics/manners/morals boot camp training. These guys always get carried away by their own wittyness.

when they come to Gaza they complain about

"donkey carts and herds of goats"

when they go on vacation they insist on meeting locals amidst donkey carts and herds of goats and pay good money for the privilege.

As to Turkey - I have read that the move into the cities is very strong (some villages emptying out) so maybe it is the recently having become urbans who are susceptible to the promises of some anchor in a never having existed "purity"

As to "Islamic Reform Movement" Bassam Tibi has been advocating a Euro-Islam - Paul Berman says that he needs bodyguards.

As to Hamas becoming more "Sharia" I think they may have a problem keeping their more firebrand youngsters in check (see Heinsohn-Link above) - that they do actions like that signals to me that those are getting more and more a say - let's hope they'll crack down on them in time and successfully (so much for government leads to moderation;-)


Anonymous said...

here is one more for you
- let's hope that Queen Noor darling of bleeding hearts doesn't support the idea ;-) (I credit that woman with great spin doctor power)


A recent statement made by a group of retired Jordanian army generals, which calls for Palestinian refugees to be stripped of their Jordanian passports, has sent shockwaves across the kingdom.

4infidels said...


Funny that some Jordanians believe denying their Palestinians citizenship or passports will better solidify the case that Jordan isn't the Palestinian state. I thought the argument for Jordan being the Palestinian state is that Jordan was created on the majority of the land of the Palestine Mandate.

Anonymous said...

as per Gertrude Bell's biography by Janet Wallach (British Iraq Guru of WW1 and frequently exasperated by Lawrence) it was the French who messed it all up - without the French and Lawrence's meddling and I forgot what else, everything would have been fine ...
(I don't know what Janet Wallach's credentials as a writer of history is, it seems she was or is a fashion editor, but the book is so tedious a read that I assume that is due to her packing in as many facts as she could get a hold off)

i.e. the land has been subjected to gurus fighting eachother by all means including modern mass media weapons at least since the crumbling of the Ottoman empire (there is a Churchill quote somewhere that he expected Jews to lead by example and thus "better" their neighbours i.e. make them more reliable and predictable)

another fact I always keep in the back of my mind is that Lawrence when raiding a train had to keep hostile tribes separated by a non-involved tribe otherwise not even the expectation of loot would keep them from preferring to fight eachother first (as per Robert Grave)

and you expect the Jordanians to NOT come up with their own definition of who is a Palestinian?
they are a monarchy, their citizens are monarchic subjects which surely makes them something above refugees
and if you watch Queen Noor closely when Maher asks her about her crown there is a moment when she is far from being amused. In my view she sees herself up there with all the others
- I wonder if she would give preference as Jane Austen would put it to Queen Elizabeth or if there was something about the Hashemites or her own blood that makes them older? I am not joking, from listening to German aristocrats on the radio I am convinced that even the most modern seeming of them still think in those terms.


4infidels said...


All the best plastic surgery in the world can't hide the ugliness that lies in the heart of Queen Noor.

The Hashemites claim to be in direct lineage from Muhammad as a qualification for their right to rule. Noor, however, gained her crown through marriage. Neither lineage nor marriage is enough to earn my respect, though it seems to have impressed many Americans.

I have a friend who is descended from Kind David. Here in America, that and $10 gets him a seat at the movie theater.

Anonymous said...

I once clerked for a guy of old Baltic aristocracy
- it was said that he had quite an ancestry
- as a boss he was like any other ... (smart in some aspects a pain in the ... in other)
I had an early experience in office life where on average the "simple" people behaved so much better than the PhDs who at the time came all from so-called good families that - if I have a prejudice - it is in favour of regular folks.

that Noor woman struck me as especially devious though.

Do you know whether this is for real?
390k don't sound like really a lot to me but then who says that that is the only contract running - but notice it is another woman they send
“Al Fakhoora Project”
"Of course, it’s entirely irrelevant to mention that Jeremy Ben Ami, director of the fake ‘pro-Israel’ group J Street, was a Senior Vice President at Fenton immediately before joining J Street. Right."
and somewhere along the line the same Ben Ami was at NIF, right?
Having looked at NIF's list of donors I wondered immediately how on earth is anybody going to control that "they" don't get their foot in there. There is a lot to be said for the truth of "safety in numbers" ;-(((. (I'm sure you know that it is said that Qatar is the Iran-loving entity).