High-ranking British diplomat arrested over anti-Semitic tirade
There has long been a lot of antisemitism in Britain's Foreign Office. It may not be the case in this instance but in general, it is said to be a homosexual thing. Arabs understand concealed homosexuality and concealed homosexuality is said to be common in the FO. FO people mostly come from "Public" (fee-paying) school backgrounds, where homosexuality was traditionally tolerated
A high-ranking diplomat at the Foreign Office has been arrested after allegations that he launched a foul-mouthed anti-Semitic tirade. Middle East expert Rowan Laxton, 47, was watching TV reports of the Israeli attack on Gaza as he used an exercise bike in a gym. Stunned staff and gym members allegedly heard him shout: 'F**king Israelis, f**king Jews'. It is alleged he also said Israeli soldiers should be 'wiped off the face of the earth'. His rant reportedly continued even after he was approached by other gym users.
After a complaint was made to police, Mr Laxton was arrested for inciting religious hatred through threatening words and behaviour and bailed until late next month. The maximum penalty for inciting religious hatred is a seven-year prison term or a fine or both.
Mr Laxton, who is still working normally, is head of the South Asia Group at the Foreign Office, on a salary of around 70,000 pounds. He is responsible for all the UK's diplomacy in that area and for briefing Foreign Secretary David Miliband, who is Jewish. Mr Laxton has worked extensively in the Middle East - he married a Muslim woman in 2000 - and has been deputy ambassador to Afghanistan. The case could not have come at a worse time for the Foreign Office. Next week, Britain is hosting an international summit on combating anti-Semitism, with politicians from 35 countries.
Mr Laxton had gone to the London Business School's gym in Regent's Park after work on January 27. An onlooker said: 'I was in the gym around 9pm and I heard this guy shouting something about "f**king Israelis". 'This bald guy was cycling away on his machine in the middle of the exercise room. When another guy approached him he shouted "f**king Jews, f**king Israelis". 'The gym was pretty full and everyone looked totally shocked. ' That sort of racist language is totally unacceptable. The gym staff called security and I think the guy was asked to leave.'
Mark Gardner, deputy director of the Community Security Trust which monitors anti-Semitism, said: 'There were an unprecedented number of anti-Semitic incidents during the Gaza conflict. 'This alleged case is particularly shocking, given the position held by the civil servant in question. 'We must not allow an overseas conflict to cause racism here in Britain and especially not among civil servants. 'The Jewish community will be rightly appalled to hear of these allegations against such a senior figure. 'We hope that the appropriate disciplinary actions will be taken forthwith, as they would be if these comments had been made against any other section of society.'
A Foreign Office spokesman said: 'It is too early to comment in detail on a matter that is currently the subject of police enquiries. But we take extremely seriously any allegation of inappropriate conduct on the part of our staff and continue to follow developments closely.'
When contacted by the Daily Mail, Mr Laxton denied his comments were anti-Jewish but refused to answer when asked if they were anti-Israeli. The Oxford graduate joined the diplomatic service in 1993 and rose rapidly through the ranks. He ran the British High Commission in Pakistan for three years before moving to Afghanistan in 2001. He stayed in Kabul for two years, then returned to London. He was appointed head of his section last year. Mr Laxton is believed to be separated from his wife, a banker who is working in the United Arab Emirates.
The Israel page of the Foreign Office website says: 'The Government has a shared responsibility to tackle anti-Semitism and all other forms of racism and prejudice'.
Never OK to say anything bad about blacks. But Jews -- now that depends
The writer below, Dominic Lawson, has not made his point as strongly as he might -- perhaps because he himself has some Jewish ancestry
In the normal course of events, it should not be difficult to distinguish between Pope Benedict XVI and Carol Thatcher. The former Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger is a startlingly intelligent, multi-lingual ex-university professor; Carol Thatcher . . . isn't. Yet the two are now serendipitously linked as this week's joint occupants of the doghouse in which we place those deemed to have offended against public decency. While Margaret Thatcher's daughter has been sacked by the BBC from its One Show for referring, over a post-programme drink or three, to a mixed-race tennis player as a "golliwog", Pope Benedict stands accused of endorsing anti-semitism, by revoking the excommunication of a British-born bishop who espouses Holocaust denial.
The fact that Benedict is a German who, as a teenager, was an (admittedly unwilling) member of the Hitler Youth has lent this affair a similar potency to that generated here by Thatcher's own accidental connection with notoriety: in the British public sector (of which the BBC is part) her mother is widely considered as wicked as Adolf Hitler.
Enough has been said about whether Thatcher's remark was "racist in intent" or merely what in other circumstances we might describe as an off-colour joke. Having met her on a couple of occasions, I'm almost certain it was the latter. It doesn't matter what I think, however: by making such a remark in the heart of the BBC she was committing a monumental social faux-pas.
The controller of BBC1, Jay Hunt, justified her sacking by saying that the One Show prided itself on its production team's "diversity" - code for the fact that it strives to employ as many as possible from ethnic minorities. Some of those people were in the room as Carol Thatcher made her remark. In such circumstances one can understand the consternation it caused.
What is socially acceptable does not just depend upon the sensibilities of the age - The Black and White Minstrel Show is unlikely to return to the BBC's schedules - but also on the immediate audience. If Thatcher had made the same remark over a gin and tonic in a rural pub, it would scarcely have been noticed. If she'd said it in a bar in Brixton she might have found her next port of call was a hospital A&E department.
For similar reasons the BBC thinks it perfectly acceptable for a comedian on Mock the Week to make a "joke" about the condition of the Queen's pudenda: it dismissed complaints with the statement that "the programme's audience have a very clear expectation of its bold and sometimes provocative humour". This is the BBC's way of saying: "Stop complaining, old farts, you wouldn't understand." The fact that the over-75s do not pay the licence fee might be partly responsible for this attitude, although the BBC would deny it.
So is the Pope, a German in his ninth decade, brought up in enthusiastically pro-Nazi Bavaria, equally unable to understand the mentality of the modern world? It's not nearly as crude, or as bad, as that. First of all, Benedict genuinely regards Holocaust denial as abhorrent. He has made a number of visits to Auschwitz. He spoke there of the "brutal massacre of millions of Jews, innocent victims of a blind racial and religious hate . . . I renew with affection the expression of my total and indisputable solidarity with our brother recipients of the First Covenant".
These are not the sort of words you could imagine being said by any of the bishops of the Society of St Pius X, whose excommunication was revoked by Benedict a week ago. The organisation was set up by the French archbishop Marcel Lefebvre in opposition to the ecumenism of the Second Vatican Council. The official Catholic rapprochement with Judaism stemmed from that and is one of the doctrinal shifts that the Lefebvrists find abhorrent; Bishop Richard Williamson has not been the only leading figure within the Society of St Pius X to have given expression to antisemitic remarks of unreconstructed medievalism.
The cause of their split with Rome, however, was a refusal to abandon the old Tridentine mass and rituals, as they were ordered to do under the reforms of "Vatican Two". In this they do have the sympathy of the present Pope, who has an aesthetic preference for the old mass, and who has infuriated the "modernists" by making this clear. He has long wanted to entice back into communion with Rome the hundreds of thousands of ordinary members of the Society of St Pius X, and the revocation of the excommunication of their four bishops was an attempt to promote this.
It's equally clear, however, that the Vatican bureaucracy has been either appallingly lazy or stupid in its anxiety to satisfy Benedict's wish to bring the Lefebvrists back into the fold. This was horribly exposed when Swedish television broadcast last week an interview with Williamson in which he said the "so-called Holocaust" was a Jewish racket to extort billions from the gullible German state by way of reparations for something that never happened. This interview took place, most provocatively, in Regensburg - where Ratzinger spent many years as a professor and where as Pope he delivered a lecture that caused a furore in the Islamic world.
It is a criminal offence in Germany to deny the Holocaust, which helps to explain why Angela Merkel made the remarkable decision to demand that the Pope personally condemn Bishop Williamson and force the creepy Englishman to retract. The BBC failed to persuade Carol Thatcher to display contrition, but the Pope, amazingly, buckled to the pressure to conform to the purely secular requirements of politics (perhaps he had also read the leader in the conservative Die Welt, which pointed out with brutal realism: "Antisemitism is not only reprehensible; it is also social suicide").
The day after Merkel's demand, the Vatican declared that "the positions of Bishop Williamson on the Shoah are absolutely unacceptable and firmly rejected by the Holy Father . . . Bishop Williamson, in order to claim admission to episcopal functions in the church, must distance himself in absolutely unequivocal and public fashion from his positions regarding the Shoah, which were not known by the Holy Father when the excommunication was lifted".
Even if he didn't know, his advisers must have had some idea. Last March The Catholic Herald, aware of the negotiations with the Society of St Pius X, ran a front page story denouncing Williamson as a "dangerous antisemite" and revealing his endorsement (on an official Society of St Pius X website) of "the Protocols of the Elders of Zion", a notorious forgery which The Catholic Herald described as "a manual in Hitler's campaign to exterminate the Jews".
Now, you might be thinking insensitivity to Jewish feelings is characteristic of the most reactionary elements within Catholicism, but would be as unacceptable here as, well, referring to a black man as a golliwog; in which case you would need to explain why it's merely funny when Rowan Atkinson dresses up as a caricature of the malevolent Jew, Fagin, in the acclaimed stage revival of Oliver!. As the Israeli newspaper Haaretz has noted, "the publicity posters on the London subway have the L from the Oliver logo refashioned into a long, protruding nose".
A few weeks ago this newspaper's theatre reviewer observed that "you might as well chuck in a black character who goes around eating watermelon, stealing chickens and grinning his head off". The show, naturally, must go on. I don't have a problem with that; but if so, let's not look down our own noses at Carol Thatcher and Pope Benedict XVI or deny that the causing of offence is about manners rather than morality.
Targeting Religious Broadcasters
Democratic plans to revive government censorship of the radio and TV airways will strike hardest at religious broadcasters who stand in the way of a liberal social revolution. Christian broadcasters tell HUMAN EVENTS they will be targeted once President Obama's appointees gain control of the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) this year. "The Left Wing, I think, will immediately start filing complaints, and it will in short order shut Christian broadcasting down," says Warren Kelley, president of "Point of View," the first Christian talk show to go on the air via satellite 37 years ago. "I think it will so limit what they say that, in essence, they will cease to be Christian broadcasters."
A number of prominent congressional Democrats, among them House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, want the FCC to bring back the so-called Fairness Doctrine. Until its abolishment by President Ronald Reagan, the doctrine gave the five-member FCC the right to demand that broadcasters present contrasting views or risk losing their broadcast license.
What is even more troubling to Christian talk show hosts is a left-wing movement to use regulatory boards like the FCC to cancel broadcast licenses and to stamp out free speech altogether. Such government power is already being exerted in Europe and Canada, where those at the microphone cannot criticize Islam or homosexuality without risking a blackout. "Our founders believed the most important liberty was religious liberty," says Frank Pastore, whom some have dubbed the "Christian Rush Limbaugh" for his daily radio talk show in Los Angeles. "They enshrined that belief in the First Amendment. And now that religious liberty is threatened. We need to just look at Canada and Europe and see what liberals have in mind. I don't want to be France. I don't want to be Canada. I want to continue to be America."
Says Bruce Fein, the FCC general counsel during the Reagan administration, "The whole purpose of the Fairness Doctrine is to force contrasting views even if it violates the broadcaster's scruples. The overall objective is to try to make it sufficiently expensive, so it isn't worth it so I'll say nothing at all. The alternative is not to have more views but to have fewer."
History tells Pastore and his colleagues they have has good reason to be concerned. Religious broadcasters were the most targeted during the Kennedy-Johnson administration. In perhaps the most infamous case -- the FCC crackdown on Christian fundamentalist Carl McIntire and his radio station, WXUR -- the commission leveled a series of complaints for McIntire not presenting "contrasting views." Finally, it refused to renew his license. McIntire, big on Christian values and anti-communism, was off the air in 1973.
Perhaps coincidentally, Christian broadcasting has grown since the Fairness Doctrine went away, producing some of the great conservative voices. Men like Pat Robertson, Jerry Falwell and James Dobson became a major pillar within the Republican Party. Their flocks help elect a Republican Congress in 1994 and George W. Bush in 2000. Their association, the National Religious Broadcasters, meets in Nashville's Opryland this weekend for an annual convention, just as Democrats in Congress mull how to bring back a doctrine that would stifle the family values message.
The convention features a panel of lawyers and broadcasters discussing possible threats from the new Obama administration. "Will hate crimes and the Fairness Doctrine now threaten the broadcasting landscape?" the convention program states. "Where can you expect attacks on your religious programming content. What is the prospect for religious liberties in America.?" One panel speaker is the host of "Janet Parshall's America," a daily popular show on the Salem Radio Network. Some congressional Democrats have talked of specifically targeting Salem and its 95 radio stations by challenging its license renewals. In all, there are over 2,000 Christian radio stations in America and 100 TV stations. "What we want to do is tell the message of Jesus," Parshalls tells HUMAN EVENTS. "What the Fairness Doctrine would have us do is give equal time to Buddha, Allah and [scientologist] L. Ron Hubbard."
Indeed, the issues the conventioneers tackle especially rankle the Left. Christian broadcasters oppose same-sex marriage, abortion, rampant illegitimacy, teen pregnancy, strict teaching of evolution and the liberal secular movement. They promote marriage, home schooling, prayer in school and homosexual-to-heterosexual conversion. "These are things that would make religious broadcasters prime targets," Fein said.
When voters in California last November approved Proposition 8, which defines marriage as between a man and woman, religious broadcasters may have made the difference. "We were a large mouth piece that kept the base informed," Pastore says.
The party holding the White House enjoys a 3-2 commission majority, meaning the Obama FCC merely has to draw up a new Fairness Doctrine and vote to institute it.
The Dallas-based "Point of View" is an example of a talk show that uses the Christian world view to discuss public policy issues. A second category of Christian broadcasting is the pastor who goes on the air to preach the Gospel. For both, the Fairness Doctrine "is going to have a chilling affect," Kelley tells HUMAN EVENTS. The process would work this way: a Muslim group such as the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR) or a homosexual rights group such as the American Civil Liberties Union would file a complaint with the FCC because, for example, "Point of View" did not provide a contrasting view.
This would spur a formal FCC investigation involving the 370 radio stations who relay the show to an estimated two million listeners. The commission would be empowered to force the station to present pro-gay rights programing or lose its license. Some stations might opt to cancel the show to avoid the controversy -- and the legal expense.
"For the teaching ministry in today's culture I think they will be dramatically affected," Kelley says. "If you have a pastor who talks of salvation through Jesus, then Muslim clerics will want equal time and to force Christian broadcasters to provide time to competing world views and religions." "If 'Point of View' does a program that deals with the problems of homosexuality, then any station that carries us would be forced to give air time to homosexuals, and I think that most broadcasters, rather than being forced into that situation, would restrict their broadcasters in the content they would put on the air."
Pastore has doubts the Democrats and Obama will be so blatant. He believes a Democratic-controlled FCC will turn to the concept of "localism" to hamstring Christian broadcasters and deny license renewals. "We are going to take back the airways and give it back to local ownership," is the way the Left will begin the movement, Pastore says.
Under Pastore's scenario, liberal groups will organize against certain broadcasters under the premise that the public airways should devote more time to local issues of importance. They then file complaints against radio stations across the country. The FCC interprets these complaints as a public outcry and establishes rules requiring stations to devote more time to pressing local issues. The end result: talk show hosts such as Pastore must relinquish air time.
"Lets get a Christian host saying something that a gay listener is offended by," explains Pastore. "Just say that's wrong. He complaints. You have rally cry on the Left. this will set up the case for localism. Barack comes on and says, 'I can hear the voices of the people.'" Parshalls believes the FCC itself will set up panels across the country to monitor talk shows and report to Washington that station X if violating "localism" and needs new ownership. "So you dilute, dilute, dilute the message of the Gospel until there is no Gospel message left," Parshalls says. "What they want to do is have us sell all kinds of good [but] we believe them to be false except the Gospel of Jesus Christ."
An Arab journalist tells it like it is
Khaled Abu Toameh: When I finished high school the PLO offices hired me as a correspondent, and I worked for a PLO newspaper for seven years during which time I attended university in Jerusalem. After I graduated I had to make a decision: do I go back and work for the PLO, or do I try to become a real journalist? It took me about two seconds to make that decision. I decided to work with the international media and the Israeli media....
I find it ironic that as an Arab Muslim living in this part of the world that I have to work for a Jewish newspaper or for the international media in order to be able to practice any kind of real journalism. Why? Because we don't have any free media. In the Palestinian areas we didn't have it when I was working there in the 1970s and 1980s, we didn't get one when we brought Yasser Arafat in to start the Palestinian Authority, and of course we don't have a free media today under Fatah, Hamas, and the rest of the gangs that are running the show out there. And this is very sad.
Sometimes I wish the problem with the media was the only problem that we have over there, but as you all know it's a very messy situation. I'm one of those who has been arguing for the past fifteen years that things have been going in the wrong direction in this part of the world. For a few months after signing Oslo we reached the point where many Jews and many Arabs missed the good old days before the peace process began.
Now, what do I mean by that? Oslo was not bad. Oslo was based on the idea of a two-state solution and ending the military occupation in one way or another. So the idea of Oslo was not bad. Separation between Jews and Palestinians who did not want to live together. And as such I supported it. I thought it was a good idea.
But the way Oslo was implemented brought disaster on both Jews and Arabs. The assumption back then in the U.S., in Israel, and in many places in Europe, was that if you bring the PLO and thousands of PLO fighters and you dump them into the West Bank and Gaza and you give them millions of dollars and guns that they will do the dirty job of policing the West Bank and Gaza. They would replace the occupation and fight Hamas and Islamic Jihad. They would do all these wonderful things. Why? Because they're on our payroll.
So the international community and Israel gathered all these PLO fighters from around the world, released thousands of PLO fighters from Israeli prisons, gave them uniforms and guns, and called them security forces. And the result was the people who had never received any basic training, people who had never finished high school, became colonels and generals in Yasser Arafat's Authority. He established sixteen different security forces with the help of the Americans, the Europeans, and the Israelis. And they started pouring money into this regime that they called the Palestinian Authority. Billions of dollars with the hope that Arafat would deliver.
Now, there's no need to elaborate. As you all know, Arafat turned out to be a crook. Most of the money that was sent to the Palestinian Authority literally went down the drain and supported the shopping sprees of Arafat's wife who was living in Paris. Instead of building us a hospital, Arafat built a casino in Jericho, as if the Palestinian revolution aspired for forty years to get us a casino. And the chutzpah was that he built that casino across the street from a refugee camp. So Palestinians did not see the fruits of peace.
My argument is as follows. The fact that Arafat was crooked didn't surprise us Palestinians. We were only surprised by the fact that the international community kept giving him money and refused to hold him accountable when he stole our money. Why didn't they invest something? They didn't want to believe it.
When I tried to alert my foreign colleagues in 1995, 1996, and 1997, to the fact that there was corruption in the Palestinian Authority, many of them asked me if I was on the payroll of the Jewish Lobby. I wanted to know where was this Jewish Lobby? If there was one maybe they would pay me.
I told them: "This is what I am hearing. The writing is on the wall. Come and listen to what Palestinians are saying." And they told me they weren't interested in that story. They told me they wanted anti-Israel stories because it made their lives so much easier. They told me they didn't want to write anything bad about Palestinians, that Arafat was a man of peace and should be given a chance. I heard this from major American journalists, by the way. Leading American journalists. I don't want to give you their names right now, but I was really frustrated. And angry.
Listen. For all these years we've been attacking the military occupation. So why is it that when I tell you something that Arafat is doing, suddenly you don't want to report it and think it's Jewish propaganda? Most of these journalists did not even want to make any effort.
By depriving these people of money, what did Arafat do? He radicalized the Palestinians who did not see the fruits of peace. So that's reason number one why Palestinian society is radicalized. But there are other reasons. Reasons number two is that you gave Yasser Arafat guns so that he could kill Hamas and Islamic Jihad, but instead he directed those guns against anyone who said they wanted reform or democracy. Arafat used your guns, your weapons, provided by the United States of America, to suppress the leaders of a new leadership.
Let me give you an example. In 1997, 29 Palestinian professors signed a petition demanding Yasser Arafat end the corruption. They found themselves either shot or killed or thrown into jail or they had to run away from the country. And of course this is not a story you would see on CNN. I don't think even the New York Times reported that.
So Arafat cracked down on the reformists and the democrats and the people who wanted good government. And he sent the rest of the people into the open arms of Hamas. He cracked down on the reformists and he refused to crack down on Hamas and Islamic Jihad.
Reason number three. You gave Yasser Arafat money to open a TV and radio station. And on this TV and radio station Arafat said "Jihad, jihad, kill the crusaders, kill the Jews, kill the infidels, kill everyone but me." Now you may ask yourself why Arafat was inciting against his peace partners in Israel, why was he inciting against the Americans and Europeans who were feeding him? It doesn't make sense.
Well, to us it does make sense. This is how our Arab dictators survive. They constantly blame the miseries of our people on the Jews and the West and the Crusaders and the infidels and the Zionist lobby and the imperialists. They use all these slogans. Arab leaders always need to make sure that their people are busy hating somebody else, preferably the Jews and the Americans. Otherwise their people might rebel, and God forbid they might demand reforms and democracy.
This is exactly what Arafat did, but he did it in Arabic. The international community - and even Israelis - did not want to listen to what Arafat was saying in Arabic. They only cared what he said in English. They said that what he said in English was good. I said "Excuse me, folks, but in Arabic Arafat is telling people to kill you." But they did not want to listen to the incitement. They underestimated it. They said "you Arabs are all corrupt and don't know anything about democracy so you deserve a dictatorship."
This incitement drove people into the open arms of Hamas. Arafat was telling people how evil the Jews are, and people then said "Hamas is right, Jews are the sons of monkeys and pigs. Why should we make peace with them?"
A fourth reason, which is a lot less important in my view, is that Israelis brought the PLO into the Palestinian areas, armed the PLO, helped create all these security militias and gangsters and mafias, and then said they needed to protect themselves from their peace partners. And how did they protect themselves? By imposing restrictions and curfews, by surrounding Palestinian communities with checkpoints. Why? Because they needed to protect themselves from the militias and mafias that they brought into the West Bank and Gaza. So Palestinians lost faith in the peace process.
All this radicalized Palestinian society to the point that when Hamas decided to run in free and democratic elections under the banner of "change" and "reform" they won. It was all very obvious. The writing was clear on the wall that anyone who challenged Arafat back then....believe me that if even Ehud Olmert had run in the Palestinian elections promising change and reform and democracy he would have won. Because in January of 2006, the parliamentary elections that were held in the Palestinian Authority were largely about internal reforms in the Palestinian areas. Hamas was ready to deliver. What did they do? They came to the Palestinians and said "Listen, folks. You've tried all these PLO people. They're corrupt. They're bad. Arafat was a thief. Abu Mazen is also a total failure. These guys stole your money. These guys are US agents, they are CIA. Why don't you try us now? We will show you that we can establish good government. And, by the way, look at what we've done for you since 1988. We've established a vast network of educational, social, health, and economic services. Arafat built a casino, and we built two universities. Arafat gave his wife 100,000 dollars a month so she can do her shopping while we gave poor people money. Arafat built bars and restaurants in Ramallah while we built orphanages and charities." So the Palestinians said "Let's try Hamas. If they come to power there is nothing left to steal. They can't be more corrupt than the PLO."
That was the basic line. I'm not saying all those who voted for Hamas in 2006 were registering a vote of protest. We have to be very careful. Hamas does have a lot of supporters. What I'm saying is that had it not been also a vote of protest against the PLO , Hamas would not have won. Why? Because I know Christians who voted for Hamas. I know centrist Palestinians who voted for Hamas. I even know PLO people who voted for Hamas because the name of the game back then was "Let's punish the PLO." And how do you do it? By voting for Hamas, their main rivals. And it worked. And Hamas came to power.
What has been happening since then is also very interesting. The U.S. government, with the help of some Europeans and some Israelis, after Hamas won the election, they went to the guys who lost the election and said "folks, here are guns and here is some money. Go bring down this democratically elected government." And what was the result of this U.S. meddling in Palestinian affairs? It backfired. It played into the hands of Hamas and even boosted Hamas' popularity on the street.
What did Palestinians think when they saw Condoleeza Rice and George W. Bush openly campaigning against this democratically elected government? Their sympathies went to this democratically elected government even though it was Hamas. And when Palestinians see PLO people, the Fatah people, openly conspiring with the Americans and the Israelis to bring down a democratically elected government, they're going to hate the PLO even more.
So U.S. and European meddling in Palestinian affairs in the aftermath of the Hamas victory further strengthened Hamas to the point where in June 2007 Hamas says "Everyone is trying to bring me down. No one is giving me a chance. The whole world is against me. You corrupt PLO people are conspiring against me. I won in a free and democratic election. If you don't believe me, ask Jimmy Carter. He supervised the election. What does everyone want from me?" And they staged a coup. Some people call it a coup. They threw the Fatah people out of Gaza. Fewer than 10,000 Hamas fighters defeated more than 70,000 American-backed Fatah policemen. The question is, how did they do it?
The answer is very simple. As soon as Hamas started shooting, these people did not fight. They ran away. They surrendered to Hamas. They basically went to Hamas and said "No, no, Hamas, please. We will give you all the guns, everything. Just leave us alone." And they ran away. First they tried to run away toward Egypt. But Mubarak is not stupid. He sealed the border. I was there when it happened.
Israel was the only country in the world that sent troops and helicopters and gunships and ambulances to save Muslims from being slaughtered by Muslims, to save the PLO people from being slaughtered by Hamas. Israel took them and dumped them in the West Bank.
And where are we standing today? I told you before that I'm one of those people who support a two-state solution. I think it's a wonderful solution. But in the end we're getting a different kind of two-state solution. We have two separate entities. One in Gaza, and one in the West Bank.
The one in Gaza is an Islamic state run by Hamas and supported by Ahmadinejad, Syria, Hezbollah, and some people say Al Qaeda and the Muslim Brotherhood. It's a very dangerous situation, and as a moderate Muslim that's the last place I want to live on this earth.
What we have in the West Bank is the secular, corrupt, powerless regime of the PLO. Abu Mazen, Abu Shmazen, all these Abus. The Arafat cronies who failed their people over the past fifteen years. Who lost the election in January 2006 because of the corruption. Who were kicked out of Gaza because they failed. Who have lost control over half the Palestinians who live in this part of the world. And they are sitting in Ramallah. These people are in power only thanks to the presence of the IDF in the West Bank. If the Israeli army were to leave the West Bank tomorrow morning these PLO people would collapse in five minutes and Hamas would take over.
The question we should ask ourselves in the wake of this scenario is whether or not there is really a partner on the Palestinian side for any deal, let alone a peace agreement. Any kind of deal. Is there really a partner on the Palestinian side? And the answer is simple. No.
Hamas is not a partner for any peace agreement because Hamas is not going to change. All these people who believe that Hamas will one day change its ideology, that pragmatic leaders will emerge in Hamas, these people are living under illusions. Hamas is not going to change. To their credit we must say that their message has been very clear. It's the same message in Arabic and in English. They're being very honest about it. They're saying "Folks, we will never recognize Israel. We will never change. We will not abandon the path of the resistance." They're very clear about it....
I don't know how to solve this problem. Talking about a Palestinian state today is a joke. Where would that state be established? Israel controls nearly half of the West Bank. These PLO people can't deliver. If Israel gives up the West Bank, you will have to go to Cairo or Amman to take a flight back to America because snipers will be sitting on the hilltops above Ben-Gurion airport.
Political correctness is most pervasive in universities and colleges but I rarely report the incidents concerned here as I have a separate blog for educational matters.
American "liberals" often deny being Leftists and say that they are very different from the Communist rulers of other countries. The only real difference, however, is how much power they have. In America, their power is limited by democracy. To see what they WOULD be like with more power, look at where they ARE already very powerful: in America's educational system -- particularly in the universities and colleges. They show there the same respect for free-speech and political diversity that Stalin did: None. So look to the colleges to see what the whole country would be like if "liberals" had their way. It would be a dictatorship.
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