Yvonne Ridley, Palestinian terrorist attacks, and peanut allergies


This is cross posted by Arieh Kovler at Fair Play Campaign Group

I’ve been having a Twitter argument with Yvonne Ridley. I know I shouldn’t.

This is the second argument I’ve had with Yvonne. The last one was in 2003 or 4, when I was at university. She came to speak at Bristol University as part of an official ‘response’ to a pro-Israel article in the student newspaper (another part of the same ‘response’ was a seven-page screed by Tim Llewellyn attacking the student journalist who wrote the article).

I was a student in the mood for a good argument, so I challenged her from the audience with some of the more outrageous comments, like saying suicide bombers were martyrs.

At the time I felt like I got the better of her, but perhaps that was just my student bravado.

Afterwards, one of her minders followed me out of the room. He addressed me by name, even though I hadn’t given it and he wasn’t a student. He made a couple of comments, smiling and friendly, but the thrust of them was that he knew exactly who I was. He never introduced himself.

Anyway, back to the present. Yesterday Yvonne suggested on Twitter that Israel was opening the Erez Crossing to plan a ““self-defense” pogrom, with as few outside witnesses as poss“. She also tweeted ”more Israelis die from peanut allergies than are killed or injured by rockets from Gaza“. Although she didn’t make her billed appearance at the pro-Iranian Quds Day rally in London, she’s been arguing with Jeremy NewmarkJoe MillisCIF Watch and me about it.

The pogrom comment is clearly nonsense, and the peanut remark is disgusting and distasteful. It’s like responding to to domestic violence against women in by saying “more women die from breast cancer every year than are killed by their husbands“. It may be true, but it’s not to the point at all. Murder is different from accidental death.

It may be true. But is it true? Where has this claim come from in the first place?

When I challenged Yvonne on Twitter for her source, she responded that  ”the answer lies within Lowkey’s lyrics“.

Lowkey is a rapper and a fan of 9/11 troofer conspiracy theories. He’s popular among Stop-the-War and anti-Israel groups and is often performs at their rallies. The lyrics which Ridley directed to me are in Lowkey’s “Terrorist“. As well including references to popular troofer tropes (“Building 7″ and nanothermite“) it has the following lyrics:

I know you were terrified when you saw the towers fall
It’s all terror but some forms are more powerful
It seems nuts, how could there be such agony
When more Israelis die from peanut allergies

Well, that doesn’t mean anything at all. More Israelis die than what? The song doesn’t say. Anyway, it’s just a song, not evidence or a statistic. I challenged Yvonne on this and she responded that she was quoting the “official stats” and had only mentioned the song in passing.

Where did these ‘statistics’ come from? My preliminary research didn’t turn up any official statistics on the number of peanut-allergy deaths in Israel, but it should be possible to make an educated guess based on other statistics.

Food allergies have become much more common in the last 30 years. Nobody knows why, though there are all sorts of theories. People with serious food allergies can go into anaphylaxis, which untreated can be fatal. Because of this, many allergic people carry epi-pens to inject chemicals that can stop the anaphylaxis.

According to a 2006 Department of Health study (pdf), anaphylaxis from allergens kills approximately 10-20 people a year in the UK, though it is not always recorded on the death certificate. Of these 10-20, not all will be the victims of food allergies; some might be allergic to chemicals, dust or other exotic allergens. Some certainly will be food allergy victims.

People can be allergic to all sorts of foods. In young children, milk and eggs are the most common allergies, though most children grow out of them. Other common trigger foods are celery, soya, shellfish, fish and citrus fruit, but one of the best-known allergies is the nut allergy (and the peanut allergy).

Peanuts aren’t nuts. They’re peas.

Peanuts are a legume, a bean that grows under the ground. True nuts grow on trees. Some people with nut allergies can eat peanuts, and vice versa, though many people who have one allergy have both.

Peanut allergies are common in much of the world, but in Israel they’re rarer. A 2008 study compared the incidence of peanut allergy between Jewish children in the UK and Jewish children in Israel. It found:

Jewish children in the UK have a prevalence of P[eanut] A[llergy] that is 10-fold higherthan that of Jewish children in Israel.

Though nobody knows for sure, scientists note that in Israel, babies eat peanuts from a very young age in the form of Bamba, and that this might be one reason for the lower allergy rates. It’a not all good news though; Israel’s ‘version’ of the peanut allergy is sesame allergy, which is much more common than it is in Europe or America.

Reviewing what we know:

  • In the UK, 10-20 people die a year of all allergies
  • Some of these 10-20 are food allergies, and some of these are peanut allergies.
  • Israel has abut 10% of the population of the UK
  • Israel has 10% of the incidence of peanut allergy compared to the UK

Based on these statistics – even allowing for possible better acute care in the UK – you’d expect about one or two allergy deaths a year in Israel, of which only a few, say one every few years, was a peanut allergy death. A recent case in Israel involving a hazelnut allergy fatality (not peanuts) was a major national story.

Where does this wrong statistic come from? I can’t be sure, but the best candidate is the earliest reference I can find: in late 2008, on a Youtube video made by Steve Johnson for the US-focused website stopfundingIsrael.com. This website calls YouTube “Jew-tube”,  and warns of the:

“zionist infiltraitors (sic) in Australia, Canada, UK and USA. They have infiltrated the Govt. They have infiltrated the media even popular culture…”

Steve Johnson co-wrote a ‘book’ called The Truth: Mossad did September 11th 2001. His speciality piece seems to be calling up those who he considers supporters of Israel, hassling them, and making them into YouTube videos for the Stop Funding Israel YouTube channel.

This channel is fascinating. Most of the videos are by Steve Johnson. The first one claims that the Norway massacres were a false flag operation done by Israel. The next is an interview with a climate-change-sceptic scientist who also seems to deny plate tectonics: earthquakes are caused because the Earth is getting bigger. Really. There’s also a video saying the Bali bombings were really the work of the Australians.

It is Steve Johnson who called up the International Fellowship of Christians & Jews to complain about their advertising campaign, which highlighted the threat of rockets from Gaza. He said:

“From 2000 to 2008, 458 have died from peanut allergies. That’s 24 times the amount that have died from Hamas rockets”

Note that unlike Yvonne Ridley, Steve Johnson doesn’t say more Israelis die from peanut allergies than are killedor injured by rockets from Gaza; only more than are killed. But even Steve Johnson can’t even back up this weaker claim. After being challenged on his peanut statistics, he added the following in the comments to that YouTube video:

Researching the Peanut Allergy I found surprisingly that because Israel feeds their young peanuts and peanut allergies have in fact the worlds LOWEST casulty rate.

The research statistics I was quoting were actually from SESAME ALLERGY REACTIONS within Israel..Which runs from 150-200 per year.

So, he wasn’t talking about peanut allergies, and he wasn’t talking about deaths. He was comparing Israeliskilled by Hamas rockets with Israelis who had allergic reactions to sesame. If the original comparison was disgusting, this one is obscene.

Still, lies are persistent and lies about Israel – even accidental lies – find themselves being repeated year after year.

Rocket fire on civillian populations is a weapon of terror. The rockets don’t have to kill very often for people to be frightened of them crashing into their homes, their schools and their places of work and worship. Since this Thursday, an Israeli has been killed by a rocket and tens have been injured. A synagogue was hit, hurting worshppers. A school has been hit too, injuring children.

All this means that Yvonne Ridley is not only being offensive and insensitive when she says “more Israelis die from peanut allergies than are killed or injured by rockets from Gaza“.

She’s also wrong.

updateYvonne Ridley has responded in the comments, below. Between insults, she writes:

 I suppose I should be flattered all the same, you follow my words closely. problem is you have no idea when someone is pulling your leg, exhibiting a bit of satire or being serious.

Anyone have any idea what that means? Is she saying she was only joking?

54 comments on “Yvonne Ridley, Palestinian terrorist attacks, and peanut allergies

  1. Arieh, “Tiddley” Ridley is almost as bad an ambassador for cuddly Islam as Lauren Booth. Both are pitifully ignorant.

    My attention was caught by Tiddley’s steadfast clinging, like a drowning man to a life raft, to the old paranoid ideation about Israel deliberately opening the Erez crossing in order to kill Palestinians. She must be a better Muslim than I think – she’s got the life position down to a T.

    You need to be intelligent to pull someone’s leg. No-one intelligent ever converted to the sort of Islam Ridley slavishly follows.

    If Tiddley is tuning in, I offer her the argument put forward by Major Avichay Adraee, IDF spokesman, on al-Jazeera during Cast Lead, when he trounced the idiot who was interviewing him in Arabic and said that the Qassams and Grads had not killed many people.

    His response was masterly and appropriately sarcastic and you can hear it from 4.05 at http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EwK0ZW4FR44&feature=related

  2. I’m not sure Ridley deserves this very impressive scientific refutation.

    It’s usually “road accidents”. More Xs die in road accidents than thru Islamic terrorism. Ridley’s is just a variation.

    So, to join in.

    More Palestininas die in road accidents than get killed by the IDF

    or

    More Palestinains die in accidents involving “accidentally” falling off high buildings than get killed by the IDF

  3. “True nuts grow on trees”

    Maybe

    but REAL true nuts convert to Islam, wear binbags and believe that Islam is “progressive”.

    • Ridley’s reference to a rapper’s lyrics as “evidence” reminds me of a “debate” (well, at least on my side I was presenting evidence in, I hope, a logical manner) I had with a commenter who dubbed herself “Owl/Minerva” over on Engage who kept insisting that because lots of people said so, it must be true (this was over, for what it’s worth, the so-called organ theft episode). She had great difficulty (that is, she refused to accept) in believing that a mere majority of opinion was neither evidence nor (more importantly) proof in anything even vaguely resembling a scientific sense.

      Talk about trying!

  4. You can see that this site has been invaded by anti-Semites, no doubt egged on by the bin liner wearer. I daresay she was upset by being caught out by you. She must be very insecure in her religion, not that I blame her.

    • Still – nice to know how much this site upsets them!!

      They may even try use the few brain cells they have to ponder the message.

  5. The peanut/sesame allergy ranting was bizarre enough (and Ridley wonders “you have no idea when someone is pulling your leg, exhibiting a bit of satire or being serious”!!!!).

    But then Johnson:
    This website calls YouTube “Jew-tube” … The Truth: Mossad did September 11th … the Norway massacres were a false flag operation done by Israel.

    There’s sadly no reasoning with warped individuals like that.

    p.s. Funny how certain CiF posters talk about a “hasbara” campaign – when judging from the ratings above, this website has itself clearly been invaded by a mass of Ridley/Johnson supporters.

    Twats the lot of them.

    • Interesting that not one of them has left a rebuttal, though. Probably because it’s clear to them from the above article that all their mindless propaganda can and will be torn to shreds. Yvonne knows that people will re-tweet her words and soon enough it will be “common knowledge” that more Israelis die from peanuts than rockets.

      Ha ha ha, Yvonne Ridley! You are so funny! It’s very funny to shrug your shoulders at death and serious injury caused deliberately by rocket fire and say ‘well, it’s not that serious because some people can die from sesame seeds’! It’s so very hilarious to get your political arguments from paranoid propagandists who pluck them out of thin air because at first listen they sound good, isn’t it? Yes. Yes it is.

      Oh, wait – no it’s not. It’s disgraceful behaviour, and kind of pathetic, too, especially from somebody who was once considered a serious journalist (apparently). I suspect that she only converted to Islam because it gave her the excuse and cover that she needed hate the western world, embrace extreme views and act in a belligerent and fame-hungry manner. I also suspect she was always like that but has found that religion and a headscarf gives her a veneer of modesty and humility.

      We don’t sit back and let allergies kill people; we look for a cure. Israel isn’t going to sit and wait for the rockets to hit.

      • Was Tiddley Ridley ever considered a serious journalist? Her nickname “Tiddley” means “drunk” in the UK and I wonder how she got that?

        Was she drawn to Islam not only because of the Stockholm Syndrome but also because its authoritarian approach offered a way to force her to give up the falling down water? No sane, centred person who could think for herself and was secure in herself would fall for the guff burbled by Islam, convert and relay its twisted message

    • I am not a “racist Zionist loon”. And FYI I post here in an individual capacity and do not “associate myself” with either the majority opinion here or on CiF.

      Have you no shame?

    • 35 (!) negative votes within an hour or two.

      Any of you idiots care to actually comment? You’re no less cowardly than the pro-Israel idiots who automatically give my posts the thumbs down.

      Pathetic.

      • pretzelberg, worry you not, it’s probably a ploy by outsiders, not to regulars here.

        Steady the buffs!

    • TO: Avram Stern (aka Pot)

      Listened to Ridley, Booth and their fellow crazed Islamists yet?

      Because if you want two examples of strangers to shame, they are surely it.

      Ridley is prime example of Stockholm Syndrome and alcohol-related brain damage (still you don’t need a brain to believe utterly in the prophet do you?)

      Booth converted to Islam after a “mystical experience” (and they must’ve been desperate because they actually accepted her) and has never read the Koran, but then many of her “superior” male coreligionists haven’t either.

      These are poster girls for Islamism in the UK, and proof positive of the arrested development of the religion of “peace”, which is why Islam will lose, time and time again.

      Very sincerely

      Kettle

    • But don’t you love the idea that they are all lurking out their, gnashing their teeth, and maybe even a few are actually getting the message?

  6. @pretzlberg, you’ve always struck me (reading your postings on CiF over the years) as a rational and thoughtful person. The same, however, cannot be said of most of the posters on this site, who seem to churn out posts of eye-watering hysteria/irrationality/bigotry with such robotic alacrity as to kill any bud of hope in an equitable and humane solution to the I/P tragedy stone dead.

    It’s all very well claiming to be an individual, associated with nobody and I accept what you say, but when a Labour politician or a broadsheet journalist is spotted participating in a forum or panel discussion with some fundamentalist Muslim nutcase, there are very damn few posters on this blog who won’t jump in to give him or her a guilt-by-association inspired kicking. I’m confident enough in your fundamental decency to know you won’t deny it.

    But that’s a side-issue, really. I wanted to address something far more dangerous and disturbing.

    @Thank God I’m An Infidel’s charming little ditty equating Palestinians with swine could have been lifted from a 1930s issue of Der Stürmer (substitute ‘Jews’ for ‘Palestinians’ and tell me, with a straight-face, that I’m indulging in hyperbole).

    @Thank God I’m An Infidel, Glenn Beck and their ilk are Israel’s worst enemies, primarily because they are the noisiest, most brutish and most bigoted of Israel’s supporters, drowning out the voices of brave, thoughtful, decent Israelis (and Jews worldwide) who rightly abominate Beck and his acolytes and abhor the kind of toxic and unthinking hatred spewed by @Thank God I’m An Infidel’.

    Mind you, I don’t suppose you or anyone on this blog care to say it because you’ll immediately be called ‘a self-hating Jew’ or an ‘anti-semite’: this is the degraded level of debate that such people have dragged so many of you down to.

    I cannot believe that you’re really comfortable finding that you’re allied (unwillingly, I trust) with the egregious Glenn Beck (who not-long-ago accused George Soros of helping the SS to hunt for fugitive Hungarian Jews. Soros did this for money, according to Beck).

    That this anti-semitic sack of ordure is welcomed in Israel, along with his travelling freak-show of Christian Fundamentalcase ghouls and zanies, should depress you as much as it does me (or any other sane person).

    This same Beck called the 100s of thousands of ordinary working Israelis protesting at the financial mis-management in Israel, ‘communists’, ‘terrorist sympathisers’ etc etc. What a prince, eh? I wonder if anyone on this blog will admit to being embarrassed by the presence of this lachrymose, deranged huckster in Jerusalem?

    Let me tell you a little story that I feel is really important because it illustrates why the venomous claptrap spouted by the likes of @Thank God I’m An Infidel have done and are doing such terrible (and, I fear, irreparable) damage to Israel.

    Their thoughtless or cynical and casual use of the term ‘anti-semite’ to describe anyone who disagrees with any policy or act by the Israeli state will lead to more of this:

    About two years ago, I hired a talented young Chinese programmer. He came from a city in South-Western China that I (and I daresay most people) had never heard of, despite it having a population in the millions. He was a bright, ambitious, hard-working young man and his English was fluent if somewhat idiosyncratic.

    He was very gentle and sweet-natured, albeit rather unworldly and my wife and daughters adopted him as a new son/brother, while my sons adopted him as a new member of their ‘gang’. He lived with us for his first six-months in London.

    Li (his name) would watch the news with me in the evening as a matter of course and one evening, not long after he’d come to stay with us, a story came on about the building of a new ‘illegal’ settlement in the ‘Occupied West Bank’ (I use the UN terms so don’t all start shrieking about the UN’s lack of ‘legitimacy’ unless you’re prepared to reject the UN’s recognition of Israel in 1948: you can’t have it both ways).

    What did I think of the situation in the Occupied Territories? Li asked me and I told him. I then asked him what his thoughts were on the Israel/Palestine tragedy (which is how I see it–for both sides).

    “Oh,” said Li, with an expression of perfect innocence “I am an anti-semite.”

    Seeing the shock on my face and the searching look I gave him, Li became flustered and asked me if he’d offended me (he was a very courteous young man). I hastened to reassure him, adding: ” but please tell me what exactly you mean by ‘anti-semite?’

    “Of course. It is someone who is opposed to the policies and actions of the Israeli State in the Occupied Territories.”

    He said this in complete innocence and good faith. He genuinely thought that ‘anti-semitism’ was a perfectly respectable position to take, simply being (as he understood it) a political stance in opposition to another political stance.

    That’s what the casual and incessant use of the term by fools and bigots like @Thank God I’m An Infidel have achieved: they’ve made anti-semitism respectable. Congratulations. I hope you’re all happy.

    With friends like @Thank God I’m An Infidel and Glenn Beck, Israel doesn’t need any enemies.

    I fully expect to be called an ‘anti-semite’ by the usual clueless Enragés which will, of course, make my point for me.

    Sorry to have bored you, @pretzelberg but I thought my too-casual and unjustified rudeness to you required an explanation.

    • Yes – Israel does not need friends like Glenn Beck.

      re the @Thank God I’m An Infidel’s “charming little ditty” is that Gideon Levy published essentially the same comment in Ha’aretz the other day from the other side of the fence, claiming that Zionists are swine.

      Charming, both comments.

      • AKUS, please don’t forget the palestinians kiddie show with the charming palestinian tyke reciting islamofascsist dogma about Jews, that Jews are apes and pigs AKA swine.

        I wish for the Islamofascist regime or iran what it wishes for the US and Israel.

          • It’s better to fight back, fight fire with fire.

            Return mortar and rocket attacks with mortar and rockets.

            Remind the Islamofascist Regime that it is in the crosshairs of a catastrophic retaliatory strike.

    • That this anti-semitic sack of ordure is welcomed in Israel, along with his travelling freak-show of Christian Fundamentalcase ghouls and zanies, should depress you as much as it does me (or any other sane person).

      And you called your opponents clueless enrages and the level of the debate degraded.

      [Glen Beck]…accused George Soros of helping the SS to hunt for fugitive Hungarian Jews. Soros did this for money, according to Beck).

      According to Soros himself he did it. True not for money, and he was 14 years old then.

      This same Beck called the 100s of thousands of ordinary working Israelis protesting at the financial mis-management in Israel, ‘communists’, ‘terrorist sympathisers’ etc etc.

      Financial mismanagement!? Most Europeands wold be very thankful being mismanaged financially like Israel. And yes, sadly the protests have been hijacked by far-left (and not exactly working) activists and corrupt politicians..

    • fart pepper said:

      “@pretzlberg, you’ve always struck me (reading your postings on CiF over the years) as a rational and thoughtful person.”

      Look pretzels, you have a fan, and what a fan.

      “The same, however, cannot be said of most of the posters on this site… blah, blah, blah”

      Yes fart, this is not another progressive, socialist, pro-Islamofascist website.

      “@Thank God I’m An Infidel’s charming little ditty equating Palestinians with swine could have been lifted from a 1930s issue of Der Stürmer (substitute ‘Jews’ for ‘Palestinians’ and tell me, with a straight-face, that I’m indulging in hyperbole). “

      fart, ever see any examples of islamofascists DEHUMANIZING Jews, calling for the blood of JEWS, calling for GENOCIDE?

      I present this video as Exhibit A in which a palestinian child recites her lesson by rote, the islamofascist teaching that Jews are “apes and pigs”.

      fart, are you troubled by what she has been brainwashed with?

      Is it Islamophobic or Counter-Revolutionary to show raw Islamofascism?

      “@Thank God I’m An Infidel, Glenn Beck and their ilk are Israel’s worst enemies, primarily because they are the noisiest, most brutish and most bigoted of Israel’s supporters”

      Really fart? We are nosier, more brutish, than the Islamofascist Regime of Iran which at a Nuremberg style rally in the Islamofascist Regime openly calls for Death for America and Israel?

      We are as noisy, brutish, and bigoted as your buddies in these pictures of a rally in London of islamofascists?

      Europe You Will Pay Your 9/11 Is On It’s Way

      Massacre/Exterminate/Butcher/Behead Those Who Slander Islam
      Freedom Go To Hell
      Be Prepared For the Real Holocaust

      http://sfcmac.files.wordpress.com/2009/03/islamofascist-signs.gif?w=350&h=327

      How about Islamofascists cursing and spitting on returning British troops in Luton?

      “That this anti-semitic sack of ordure is welcomed in Israel, along with his travelling freak-show of Christian Fundamentalcase ghouls and zanies, should depress you as much as it does me (or any other sane person). “

      fart, So Orthodox Islamofascist Fundamentalcase ghouls and jihadis don’t bother you? Says a lot about you, doesn’t it.

      “This same Beck called the 100s of thousands of ordinary working Israelis protesting at the financial mis-management in Israel, ‘communists’, ‘terrorist sympathisers’ etc etc. What a prince, eh? I wonder if anyone on this blog will admit to being embarrassed by the presence of this lachrymose, deranged huckster in Jerusalem?”

      fart, you think there aren’t Leftist nutjobs in Israel as there are elsewhere in the world, then you must be a bigger boob than I thought.

      “Let me tell you a little story that I feel is really important”

      Goody! I like stories.

      “venomous claptrap spouted by the likes of @Thank God I’m An Infidel have done and are doing such terrible (and, I fear, irreparable) damage to Israel.”

      You mean the hundreds of terrorist attacks by Islamofascists, all over the world, don’t do irreparable damage to the image of the self proclaimed Religion of Peace?

      “Their thoughtless or cynical and casual use of the term ‘anti-semite’ to describe anyone who disagrees with any policy or act by the Israeli state”

      Like the use of “Islamophobe” after any islamofascist terrorist plot?

      “About two years ago, I hired a talented young Chinese programmer. He came from a city in South-Western China that I (and I daresay most people) had never heard of…”

      fart, Show Li videos and pictures of…
      - Hijacked passenger planes flying into the World Trade Center
      - face of the Afghan girl on the cover of Time magazine
      - http://img.timeinc.net/time/daily/2010/1007/a_time_cover_0809.jpg
      - the two 1,500 year old Buddahs of Bamiyan Afghanistan destroyed by the taliban
      - the gay teens hanged in the Islamofascist Regime of Iran
      - the 5,000 Kurds gassed to death in Halabja Iraq
      - the 7/7/05 bombing of London buses and the underground
      - the Assad dictatorship gunning down his people
      - Hamass using children as Human Shields
      - Palestinians brainwashing their children to aspire to be shaheeds/martyrs
      - Hezbullahs fascists doing their outstretched arm salutes like their Eurotrash role models
      - Just Google Images “arab nazi salute”
      - Islamofascist Regime of iran using their own children to clear mine fields after the 8-year Iraq/Iran war
      - The necessity of CHECKPOINTS at every airport in the world

      “That’s what the casual and incessant use of the term by fools and bigots like @Thank God I’m An Infidel have achieved: they’ve made anti-semitism respectable. Congratulations. I hope you’re all happy.”

      fart, I’m happy that you took the time to air your progressively islamofascist views. All that you do is make anti-Islamofascism respectable.

      “With friends like @Thank God I’m An Infidel and Glenn Beck, Israel doesn’t need any enemies.”

      With “friends” like fart pepper and “progressives” and socialists, Europe doesn’t need any additional enemies.

      “I fully expect to be called an ‘anti-semite’ by the usual clueless Enragés which will, of course, make my point for me. “

      fart, I call you a fascist and an apologist for Islamofascism

      Here fart is a video of your hero, the Grand Mufti of Jerusalem, meeting his fellow fascist and national Socialist hitler.

      1941 The Grand Mufti meets Hitler

      .
      “Sorry to have bored you, @pretzelberg but I thought my too-casual and unjustified rudeness to you required an explanation.”

      fart, you are such a polite knuckle dragging fascist.

    • there are very damn few posters on this blog who won’t jump in to give him or her a guilt-by-association inspired kicking

      That is of zero relevance to me and how I phrase my comments. If you want to associate me with other posters here or indeed the general tone of the website, then you are free to do so. But I am certainly not “allied” with them – as you would know if you’ve seen a) my posts and b) the vitriole that comes my way.

      There are still pro-Israel posters over at CiF – thank fucking God. Would you consider them “allied” with the Guardian?

      You seem to mean well, and I think a lot of posters here would agree with what you mean re. Beck (and indeed Thank God I’m An Infidel).

  7. I am noticing the bizarre star ratings for the sensible posts here.

    Could it be??? Tiddley’s supporters are out in force???

    People we should be flattered. She obviously believes that we are a threat to her rapidly disappearing good name and we know that she “notices” (ie seeks out) mention of herself online. Keep up the good work.

  8. Art, yours is a long post which is thought-provoking and I need to mull it over. If I may, I will choose one aspect of it and perhaps come back to some of the others later on. You say:

    “..when a Labour politician or a broadsheet journalist is spotted participating in a forum or panel discussion with some fundamentalist Muslim nutcase, there are very damn few posters on this blog who won’t jump in to give him or her a guilt-by-association inspired kicking…”

    Be fair Art, this is often roundly deserved although you make it sound as if it’s done indiscriminately. Many politicians are so desperate for air time and column inches that they appear alongside the story of the moment and say little or nothing to refute the egregious racism and lies such people spout before millions. Moreover, they fall prey to the “opinions as facts” and lies which grow in the telling by which all the media is beset and which become a specious “truth” if they are repeated often enough. I have seen and heard comparatively few UK politicians actually speaking out against the sort of overblown and exaggerated bilge spoken by Muslim leaders about alleged Israeli aggression.

    So many politicians haven’t the first clue of the context of the Middle East conflict beyond what they have been told by their minders because they haven’t bothered to find out. Add to that the inherent pro-Arab (and ipso facto anti-Jewish) mindset which is encultured into the UK society and elite for decades, and it takes very little for them to be “encouraged” to pursue the sound byte which will bring them fame as, for example, a champion of the “poor oppressed Palestinians.” My own MP is a decent enough soul but hasn’t the faintest grasp of ME politics nor of the depth of antisemitism purveyed by the Muslim establishment in this country. That he seems not to want to find out more disturbs me.

    As you rightly suggest, the too-free accusations of antisemitism do the equivalent of undermining the currency, but far too often “anti-Zionism” is a threadbare cloak for Jew-hatred not least because it uses the same tropes.

  9. Art – With respect, take a look at your language here.

    I can’t help but notice that anyone who shares your point of view is ‘thoughtful’. ”brave’, ‘decent’ and similar. Whereas anyone who may have a different point of view is the opposite of sane and even ‘deranged’. You are describing responses as ‘hysterical’ when they apply to someone you disagree with. In my view this detracts enormously from the point you are trying to make.

    I don’t know if you are aware of how Europe – in general – is struggling with this type of labelling? Are you aware that someone who isn’t towing a particular ‘ism’ is described as ‘lunatic’, ‘deranged’, ‘insane’? When in fact, more often than not they are just at varying points along a ‘not convinced’ spectrum.

    Some of us simply want to return to the old-fashioned style of debating in which views can be discussed and either upheld or rejected in a sensible manner. As it stands now, fear of being labelled ‘insane’ is killing off rational debate. This is a very dangerous place to be. It is neither democratic nor healthy.

    You don’t like Glenn Beck, that much is clear. We know little of him in the UK. But describing him as a ‘huckster’ or ‘brutish’ or ‘toxic’ isn’t really telling me in any rational way why you see him as an enemy of Israel, is it?

    You pre-empt responses to your post in a similarly unhelpful way by describing them as coming from from ‘the usual clueless Enrages’. Why ‘clueless’, Art? And why not debate people rather than lecture them with such emotive language?

    • @penny, your willingness to sweep Beck’s anti-semitism (perhaps you disagree with 400 US rabbis who wrote to Fox condemning Beck and his vile attacks on Soros) under the carpet speaks volumes, as does the toleration you and most of the people on this blog show for the the virulent racist ranting of @Thank God I’m An Infidel (or did you think that ‘Pala-swine’ was just harmless japery?) and others.

      Evidently, this blog’s stated policy: ‘…Comments which are ad hominem, racist, contain threats of violence or other inappropriate material will be deleted…’ does not include Arabs or Muslims in those strictures. What a shock.

      But why be surprised? Ariel Sharon’s description of Palestinians as ‘vermin’ (the very same term used to describe another racial minority in Europe, who were then treated like ‘vermin’ and exterminated) to @Thank God I’m An Infidel’s ‘Pala-swine’ are part of the same continuum. I call it ‘hysteria’ and ‘racism’; what do you call it?

      I won’t waste any more time on this blog. I’d thought it might be possible to have a candid discussion with honest supporters of Israel but this blog reeks of dishonesty, disingenuousness, faux appeals to ‘fair play’ and a blank refusal to try to understand that the I/P narrative, like any narrative has many sides to it.

      This blog only accepts one narrative: Israel is always right, always just, always restrained and always reasonable. Anyone who disputes this is attempting to ‘de-legitimize’ Israel and is, ipso facto an ‘anti-semite’.

      This blog and those like it are symptoms of the deep-rooted psychological illness that will destroy Israel. 50 years from now, young Israelis will curse this generation of bigots, racists and thugs.

      I won’t trouble you again. Enjoy your solipsistic echo-chamber. I’ll leave you with the following; if you have an honest bone in your body, it’ll disturb you deeply– I’m not optimistic:

      Just try a thought-experiment for a moment. Imagine what Israel’s policies and tactics would have been over the years had it not wanted to make a land-for-peace deal because in practice it wanted the land more than it wanted the peace, and that it wants the land but wants to ensure that the “demographic problem” is kept under control by not having to rule directly over a bunch of unruly non-Jewish Arabs who will insist on having human rights, which if granted would destroy the Jewish nature of Israel.

      What would successive governments do if they were operating according to such principles? It seems to me that they would use the following combination of tactics

      1. Loudly insist on all possible occasions that they have “no partner for peace”. If the Palestinian leadership is united, then claim that they are unfit to be negotiated with because they are evil terrorists, and if the Palestinian leadership is divided, then claim that no negotiations are possible because the other side doesn’t have the power to deliver its end of the bargain.

      2. When negotiations with the Palestinians are unavoidable, ensure that the negotiations are strung out for the longest possible time with endless bickering over minor issues, and ensure that the negotiations ultimately fail, or are arranged for a delayed or progressive implementation which Israel can then cancel at a whim citing “security concerns”.

      3. Keep building further settlements irrespective of any promises made to the Americans or others. Obfuscate the issue by describing new building as “natural growth”, or claiming that new settlements are “illegal” and will be removed in due course. Of course, they hardly ever are, except that occasionally a caravan will be removed from a hilltop with great fanfare.

      4. Whip up as much fury among the Palestinian people as possible so that they are so angry at Israel that Palestinian public opinion is made as anti-peace as can be achieved. Publicise all Palestinian anti-peace actions and claim that they show that the Palestinians will never be satisfied with anything less than driving the Jews into the Mediterranean. This can be achieved with routine killings of individual Palestinians by Israeli soldiers for which nobody is ever brought to trial, coupled with occasional larger-scale operations going after “terrorist infrastructure” which in practice end up demolishing key elements of Palestinian civil society. For maximum effect, such larger-scale operations should be timed to occur whenever the pressure to participate in negotiations is rising, such as the imminent inauguration of a more moderate American president.

      5. Ensure that the Palestinians remain as poor and helpless as possible, by restricting economic activity of all kind by means of checkpoints, blockades, barriers and other restrictions. In doing so, encourage the emigration of as many Palestinians as possible, and make it is difficult as possible for them ever to return once they have gone.

      6. Prevent as far as possible the building of new Palestinian homes or the expansion of Palestinian towns in order to claim that the surrounding land is unused and unwanted by the Palestinians and therefore can and should be built on by settlers.

      7. Whip up hatred among ordinary Israelis by making parallels with the Holocaust at every opportunity, and ensure that Israeli history textbooks include lies suggesting that the flight of the Palestinians during the 1948 war wasn’t an ethnic cleansing carried out under the guns of Israeli forces but was instead a voluntary movement to make way for the advancing Arab armies. Neglect to mention that the best way for a population to assist the advance of a friendly army is to stay put and do what it can to interdict enemy lines of supply and communication.

      Send not to ask for whom the bell tolls…after all, sleepwalking is working out so well for you.

      Adieu.

      • Art – did you bother to read a single word that I wrote?

        I said I was in the UK and I knew next to nothing about Glenn Beck. How does that translate in your mind to sweeping his apparent anti-semitism under the carpet for heaven’s sake? I don’t even know the man!! How could I know anything about a letter from 400 rabbis when I’m living two thousand miles away in a country which has not so much featured Beck in a single TV or radio program or news article?

        This is like Alice in Wonderland!

        Point to one part of my post which shows clear support for ‘virulent, racist ranting’ please. Point to a single line that has me cheerleading for Ariel Sharon? These are constructs you’ve introduced and answered on my behalf. Isn’t it more usual to ask what someone thinks before you decide for them? Is this your usual mode of debate? If so, it’s dominant and it sucks.

        Show me where you are having a ‘candid discussion’ Art because for the life of me, I can’t see a discussion of any sort. You call the shots and if someone isn’t in total agreement with you – perhaps because they genuinely do not know diddly squat about a man you say is toxic – you slam them as dishonest.

        I said I didn’t know a single thing about Glenn Beck. You had a chance for ‘candid discussion’ by calmly and thoughfully (qualities you seem to admire) explaining why he was dangerous. Instead, you’ve just yelled and projected your own beliefs and anger onto me.

      • fart pepper staid:

        ” Ariel Sharon’s description of Palestinians as ‘vermin’”

        Really? Care to present supporting evidence?

        Now here is a video of a palestinian child, successfully brainwashed to recite the old islamofascist chestnut about Jews – that they are apes and pigs.

        Does that bother you fart?

        Pease don’t go fart, you make an excellent third-rate sparring partner.

      • So you have finally shown your true colours, art. You say that there are many facets to any conflict but you have laid out only the narrative which holds Israel at fault.

        You overlook the salient fact that the arabs are obsessed with the imperative to kill jews (what’s new?) and the destruction of israel.
        The jews have no such reciprocal intentions.

        You pretend that you can’t tell the difference between:

        “You’re a pig and we’re going to kill you” (again)

        And

        “Your a pig for calling me a pig and wanting to kill me” (again)

        It’s a game that’s played only by the enemies of Jews and Israel.

        You come across as conceited, manipulative and dishonest – and I don’t believe your cute little story about Li.

      • Ah, you won’t “waste time” here, having insulted us all so roundly, because we refuse to agree with your toxicity?

        Where have you approached us respectfully, Art, and it’s not as if these are your own ideas! They have a certain samey quality so I googled several phrases of the excerpt you quoted (although you took care not to source it, perhaps because you knew it would highlight your biases for good and all) – and bingo! your true colours really do come shining through because it’s lifted straight from a comment by one Jonathan West (a confused man indeed, who’s an atheist and a confirmed member of the Church of England and a writer for CiF) to a CiF thread by our old mucker Greg Philo of dubious research standing. Why didn’t you tell us where you got it Art?

        You’ve a real nerve calling this blog a solipsistic echo chamber, Art, after quoting from the most hate-filled and one-sided blog on the internet, which regularly deletes posts which do not reflect its world view (ie hatred of Israel) and bans people for disagreeing with its authors.

      • So fart pepper sensing his intellectual and moral defeat, ran away with his vestigial tail between his legs.

        Happy Nakba fart!

  10. “”more Israelis die from peanut allergies than are killed or injured by rockets from Gaza“”

    So, the logical conclusion is that Hamas should shoot bags of peanuts into Israel to achieve their goal of killing all the Jews.

    What a vile idiot this woman is. Where do the British breed people like her and Lauren Booth?

    • “Where do the British breed people like her and Lauren Booth?”

      In kennels?

      But the kennel would have to be in Europe because Muslims hate dogs too.

    • A mate of mine works in some sort of government research establishment, AKUS, funded by the Foreign Office. He’s fond of telling tall stories and I don’t know whether to believe this, but he says that people like Tiddley were deliberately approached by the UK government, which has Islamists and Islamist sympathisers at the highest levels, to be trained to spread the da’wa so as to get us all with the programme as regards Islam and so that there wouldn’t be public discontent when sharia took over.

      However, after 7/7, according to friend, when the tide of public opinion turned somewhat against Islam, funding was cut off and the programme had to scratch around for substitute. Instead of being trained by intelligence and intelligent people, they began to be trained by long bearded Islamist lunatics, so, naturally, by the time Ridley and her ilk joined the standard was as low as it is now.

      Said long-bearded lunatics believe that “famous” people who convert to Islam will influence the rest of us favourably towards it I gather.

      Friend, on another occasion when somewhat in his cups, referred to a factory which churns out Tiddley Ridley- and Lauren Booth-like characters who are chosen because they are needy and damaged people.

  11. I hate to use such harsh language but she sounds like an utter idiot. And she’s been given far too much attention

  12. Pingback: White Christian Terrorism | The Social Spectator

  13. So funny coming across this.

    Yesterday, Ridley tells me that the rockets coming from Gaza are merely “fireworks and fertiliser”. After asking her why Hamas haven’t built bomb shelters for the citizens of Gaza, since they’ve managed to sneak in so many weapons they must be able to sneak in building materials, she tweets me back saying “weapons? You mean fertiliser bombs…..”

    So, now she thinks a fertiliser bomb isn’t a weapon. Try telling that to the families of those killed in the 2005 London underground/bus bomb and the hundreds injured.

    Following on from that, she thinks that Israelis don’t suffer from mental trauma as a result of rockets but “victim mentality”. I have repeatedly sent her links to a journal article which gives lots of stats and accounts of the mental health problems suffered by Sderot residents. She has yet to acknowledge that her knowledge of mental health is obviously lacking and in this day and age of awareness, it’s pretty damn offensive.

    But to be honest, I love seeing her spout rubbish, as it just shows the normal people just how soft her brain has become.

    Award winning journalist? Did it come in the “biggest moron” category?

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