SOAS London event dispells ‘simplistic’ view that Hizbullah is a terror group

Cross posted from London-based blogger Richard Millett 

To say that my question “Is this book pro-Hizbollah?” wasn’t well received on Tuesday night at SOAS is an understatement.



I was at the book launch of The Hizbullah Phenomenon: Politics and Communication written by Lina Khatib, Dina Matar and Atef Alshaer.

After I had asked my question Dina Matar said “I knew you were going to ask that” and Lina Khatib waved the book at me and said “Why don’t you read it?”

The book explains how Hizbullah has been successful in staying relevant since its 1982 inception by adapting itself to changing situations and communicating these adaptations through various means such as poetry and social media.

Hizbullah are poets? Who knew.

One can imagine: “To kill a Jew, or not to kill a Jew. That is the question.”

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George Galloway boycotts 6 million Jews

To those who don’t believe that BDS and other forms anti-Zionist agitation often lead to racism, here’s a video posted today at the site of the Oxford University Student Union.

The Respect MP (and ‘Comment is Free’ contributor) had just begun to debate Eylon Aslan-Levy, a student at Brasenose, a constituent college of Oxford, on the motion ‘Israel should withdraw immediately from the West Bank’.

Here’s what transpired next.


Galloway had been “misled”.  He wouldn’t have agreed to participate if he knew he was debating an Israeli.  He said:

 “I don’t recognize Israel and I don’t debate with Israelis.

(I guess we can assume his policy of exclusion doesn’t extend to Muslim and Arab citizens of the state.)

So, out of a population of roughly 13.5 million Jews in the world, 6 million live in Israel. 

George Galloway, who has paid homage to Saddam Hussein, “glorified” Hezbollah leader Hassan Nasrallah, and even praised the Syrian butcher, Bashar al-Assad, doesn’t respect 44% of the world’s Jews.

Whilst there is always the danger of using gratuitous political analogies in even the most sincere attempts to characterize the extreme malevolence of the BDS movement, there is a passage in a book about European Jewish history I read a while back which used a darkly evocative term that seems, at least in this context, historically apt.

The book, ‘The fate of European Jews’, by Leni Yahil, characterized the effects of the Nuremberg Laws and other antisemitic measures enacted by Germany in the 1930s as condemning the nation’s Jews to a “social death” – an idea which resonates at least when contextualizing the political objectives of some of the most extreme anti-Israel activists.

George Galloway, by, in effect, boycotting and refusing to recognize the moral legitimacy of Israelis (and not merely the state or its institutions), is attempting to consign six million Jewish men, women and children to pariah status, and social exclusion from the international community.

This is the hideously racist moral place the malign obsession with the Jewish state – often the sine qua non of the BDS movement – inevitably leads.    

Guardian video falsely claims that Hezbollah drone was shot down over “Palestinian territory”.

The Guardian posted the following video story on the Hezbollah drone shot down by the Israeli Air Force on Oct. 6.

Note the text on the screen claiming that the drone was shot down over “Palestinian territory”.

The video included a clip of Hezbollah leader Hasan Nasrallah claiming that the Iranian sponsored Islamist terror group had the right to send such UAVs over “southern Palestine”.

The Guardian’s caption for the video reads as follows:

“The Hezbollah leader, Sayyed Hassan Nasrallah, says it sent the drone shot down by Israel over Mount Hebron in the West Bank on Saturday. Nasrallah says it is the right of Hezbollah to fly drones in the occupied territories. Israeli prime minister Binyamin Netanyahu says his country will act to defend its borders.”

However, the drone, which was launched from Lebanon, was not shot down over Palestinian territory.  

The UAV traveled down the Mediterranean coast before crossing into Israel from Gaza. Then, it traveled east across Israel’s Negev desert, and was shot down above the Yatir Forest – south of the border with the West Bank, clearly inside Israel.

“A” marks the Yatir Forrest

The text on the video, as with the caption, is not accurate.

You can contact the Guardian’s readers editor, Chris Elliott, to seek a correction.

Richard Millett’s ‘Al Quds Day’ Report: Hezbollah marches through London again

Cross posted by Richard Millett

At Al Quds Day in London today.

Remember during the Olympics when Britain celebrated how multicultural we are and how we accept people of all cultures and races? Well, it seems, the party is already over.

Britain’s Jews are made to feel especially uncomfortable. Today, yet again, Hezbollah supporters marched through the streets of London for the Khomeini inspired Al Quds Day. Instead of congregating in Trafalgar Square like last year, they assembled outside the American Embassy.

Hezbollah has been involved in a worldwide campaign to murder as many Jews as possible. It started in Argentina in the early 1990s when both the Israeli consulate and a Jewish community centre were bombed by Hezbollah leaving hundreds of Jews and non-Jews dead and disabled. And recently in Bulgaria Hezbollah blew up a bus full of young Israeli tourists leaving many dead and crippled.

This is all fully in line with Hassan Nasrallah’s statements that Jews are descended from pigs and apes and if the world’s Jews gathered in Israel it would save Hezbollah the effort of going after them worldwide.

Last year Hezbollah activists held up signs proclaiming “Death to Israel”, “Israel Your Days Are Numbered” and “For there to be peace Israel must be destroyed”. Today the disingenuously named Islamic Human Rights Commission, a registered charity, was allowed to repeat the exercise.

And this year the march and rally were advertised on the back of some 400 London buses!

I wasn’t there for very long today. Once again I was quietly trying to film proceedings. No one recognised me until an anti-Ahava activist tipped off stewards from the Islamic Human Rights Commission who jostled me and complained to the police who, in turn, ushered me away.

After the assembled crowd was urged to chant “Zionism must go” and “From The River to the Sea Palestine Will be Free” I saw both Reverend Stephen Sizer and Labour MP Jeremy Corbyn address it.

Leaflets sponsored by were handed out. They read, inter alia, ”The world ended Nazism and Apartheid, isn’t it time to end the suffering of the Palestinians?” and “Israeli soldiers of the Givati Brigade ordered around 100 people in to the Wa’el Samouni house at gunpoint. They then bombed the house killing 29 people. They then denied emergency crews access to the house for four days, shooting at ambulance drivers if they approached the house. In case anyone mistook the intent of the Givati in this crime, they left a message on one of the remaining walls of the house, daubed in Hebrew it read ‘The Only good Arab is a Dead Arab.’”

One has to ask why does Britain rightly ban groups like Muslims Against Crusades for causing public outrage but not Hezbollah which is actively attempting to murder Jews worldwide. Are Britain’s Jews deemed so dispensable?

I think we know the answer by now.

Al Quds Day London 2012. So much for “multi-cultural Britain”.

Someone’s in love with Hezbollah.

The heavies.

Giving me the evils.

More evils.

Racism descends on a sunny London.

The Green Party?

Neturei Karta at their usual pre-Shabbat hate-fest.

“Daddy, daddy can we go to another hate-fest today?”

Neturei Karta and Hezbollah; the perfect fit?

‘Global March to Jerusalem’ Update: Quarrels within anti-Zionist ‘Sunni-Shia/Red-Green’ Alliance?

A guest post by Hadar Sela

Since the publication of the two-part report on the Global March on Jerusalem scheduled for March 30th, further information and several new developments have come to light thanks to the work of some wonderful people.

 Aaron took a look at the subject of the registration and hosting of the various GMJ websites and found that they share an IP address with the website of the AhlulBayt Islamic Mission – the Islamic Republic of Iran aligned Shia missionary organisation in the United Kingdom. The server hosting both the AhlulBayt site and the GMJ sites is registered to a Leicester resident named Shabbir Hassanally. Read all the details here.

Mr Hassanally appears to be quite a fan of Hizbollah’s Hassan Nasrallah. In fact he puts considerable effort into making English language sub-titles for Nasrallah’s frequent speeches which he then posts on his own blog – apparently unconcerned by the fact that Hizbollah’s military wing is proscribed by his own government and that the glorification of terrorism is a criminal offence in the UK.  

Hassanally has also acted as roving reporter in Lebanon for the Palestine Telegraph – founded and edited by Sameh Habib (aka Sameh Akram Subhi Habeeb) who is also spokesman for the flotilla-organising ‘European Campaign to End the Siege on Gaza’ which was set up by the Muslim Brotherhood’s European arm – the Federation of Islamic Organisations in Europe (FIOE) – in 2007. The Palestine Telegraph proved to be too extreme even for its former patron Jenny Tonge and it and its editor have been involved in multiple scandals.

Here is Shabbir Hassanally celebrating the 32nd anniversary of the Iranian regime last year. Note his apparent subscription to the messianic Mahdi concept and his description of Israel as “the cancer occupying our beloved Palestine“.

If UK readers are now pondering the efficacy of their government’s ‘Prevent‘ counter-terrorism policy upon which so much of their taxes have been spent, they will certainly not be reassured by the fact that Hassanally has also been given a platform at the Muslim Shia Welfare Foundation in Leicester, which is – of course – a registered charity.

A variety of interested parties are making intense efforts to bring Jerusalem to the top of the publicity agenda ahead of the planned march next month, including a conference in Qatar earlier this week (for some reason apparently attended by UN representative Robert Serry), an incendiary press release  by the Muslim Brotherhood’s spiritual mentor Yusuf al Qaradawi and publicity on the websites of Hamas and ‘Unified Umma’.

However, it would appear that all is not rosy in the world of joint Sunni-Shia/Red-Green alliance project management.

From the Facebook account of ‘Viva Palestina Australia  (h/t to F.) we learn that initial enthusiasm for the GMJ project has been somewhat dampened due to apparent differences of opinion with co-ordinator Zaher al Birawi.

Feb 19

 Feb 21

Feb 21/22

Feb 22

 Feb 21


 Feb 21

Feb 22


Meanwhile, over at ISM California, Paul Larudee is chastising his fellow activists for not getting behind the GMJ in sufficient numbers.

Well well; it seems as though some people even within the ‘pro-Palestinian’ movements are waking up to the extremist nature of the GMJ venture and its leaders and organisers and the fact that such publicity stunts do nothing to help the Palestinian people.

About time.  


The Guardian’s “Respected American Academic”: Noam Chomsky

In characteristically ‘fair and balanced’ form, and apparently fully embracing its role as self-appointed defence advocate for Raed Salah, the Guardian published two more letters in support of the Islamist Sheikh currently detained at Her Majesty’s pleasure on July 4th.  

One of the letters is from veteran anti-Israel campaigner Noam Chomsky and its content does little to surprise. What is interesting, however, is a report on Harry’s Place which would suggest that the letter/article first appeared on the website of the Hamas support group MEMO but was then later removed and at a subsequent juncture appeared on the Guardian letters page.

Imaginative minds can only speculate as to the goings on behind that scenario; after all, it wouldn’t be the first time that the proximity of views between the Guardian and MEMO has been revealed and noted.  

What is slightly more surprising was the apparent need to promote Chomsky’s letter further on the ‘Middle East Live liveblogging section of the Guardian’s news section where, among news of renewed violence in Tahrir Square and the Syrian town of Hama, Matthew Weaver squeezed in the earth-shattering news that:

“The respected American academic Noam Chomsky has written to the Guardian to condemn government plans to deport the Palestinian activist Sheikh Raed Salah.”

Not just any old academic, one notes, but a ‘respected’ one. Presumably that word is intended to add gravity and authority to the Chomsky epistle but, rather, it indicates the type of person considered to be worthy of admiration at Guardian HQ.

Chomsky’s record is famously rich, but one of his more egregious actions was his decision to spend a week visiting Hizbollah in Lebanon in 2006, which included a meeting with Hassan Nasrallah who, weeks later, rained over 4,000 rockets down on northern Israel, killing dozens of civilians.

During the visit, Hizbullah’s ‘Al Manar’ TV station quoted Chomsky as saying:

“Hizbullah’s insistence on keeping its arms is justified… I think Nasrallah has a reasoned argument and [a] persuasive argument that they [the arms] should be in the hands of Hizbullah as a deterrent to potential aggression, and there is plenty of background reasons for that. So until, I think his position [is] reporting it correctly and it seems to me [a] reasonable position, is that until there is a general political settlement in the region, [and] the threat of aggression and violence is reduced or eliminated, there has to be a deterrent, and the Lebanese army can’t be a deterrent.”

One has to wonder if the people of Lebanon, who have seen Hizbollah take over their country in recent months, without needing to fire a shot, and anxiously await the outcome of the indictments of the Special Tribunal on Lebanon, would agree with the Guardian’s definition of Chomsky (the terrorist supporter) as ‘respected’ – likewise the Syrian and Iranian protesters who found themselves being attacked by Hizbollah thugs brought in by their respective regimes to help quell dissent.   

But at least they now know the type of person whom Guardian editors find worthy of respect. 

Islamic Society at Imperial College hosts Norman Finkelstein, who praises Hezbollah leader, justifies violence

The following was written by K. Gena, a student at Imperial College London who attended Norman Finkelstein’s talk at the University on November 26th as a part of the Islamic Society’s Justice Week.  The talk was a part of Finkelstein’s UK lecture tour.

If you’ve ever taken a pessimist on a hard journey you will know that the journey becomes hell. The person sees only the bad side of the coin, conveys suspiciousness and uses superstition to predict the failure of the journey. Well, a pessimist eventually can be left home alone, but what can be done with a controversial radical, who also happens to be a charismatic speaker?

One of these individuals is Norman Finkelstein, an invited speaker by the Islamic Society to Justice Week. He was introduced as a professor, although his academic rank would be equivalent to a lecturer (he was denied tenure in the US), and he has a track record of controversy among academic colleagues.

Being at his lecture reminded me of the movies by Michael Moore which supposedly reveal hidden conspiracies behind any action or event. But if the movies by Moore are usually taken with a pinch of salt, I was surprised to see a lack of critical reflection on behalf of the people in the audience who failed to challenge any of Finkelstein’s views.

Worse than that, the inaccuracies of some of the facts presented went mostly unnoticed because of the crowd’s almost naive willingness to believe.

Most of the focus of the talk was on the operation “Cast Lead”, a 3-week armed conflict in the Gaza strip during winter 2008-2009. Israel started the operation after an escalation of rockets fired into its territory by Hamas militants.

Hamas is the largest Palestinian militant Islamist organisation widely recognised as a terrorist organisation, which took over control of Gaza in 2006.

From the beginning Finkelstein brilliantly downplayed the necessity of the Israeli action, and made the situation into an almost one-sided-conflict portraying Israel as an unprovoked aggressor. His rhetoric reminded me of that of a politician who highlights those aspects which favour his statements, while ignoring others that don’t support his case.

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CiF readers’ obsession with Israel in one simple image

James Denselow’s CiF piece on Nov. 20, “Lebanon: justice at what cost?“, pertained to the possible indictments against Hezbollah members for the assassination of former Lebanese Prime Minster, Rafik Hariri.

Refreshingly, Denselow, unlike so many other CiF writers, didn’t reveal an obsession with Israel – never once mentioning the Jewish state in his 769 word essay.  Indeed, anyone paying attention knows that the case against Hezbollah is extremely strong.

However, I put the reader comments, beneath the column, in a software program that creates an image with each word sized according to the frequency in which its used.  Here’s what was produced.

Apparently, CiF moderators’ efforts to prevent the comment threads from veering off-topic still aren’t very effective, to say the least.