Guardian editor defends Hamas’s right to kill Israelis, AGAIN.

During the last war in Gaza two years ago, Guardian associate editor Seumas Milne defended the Palestinian ‘right’ of armed resistance, while arguing that Israel, as the ‘occupying power’, had no such right to defend itself against Hamas (It’s Palestinians who have the right to defend themselves, Nov. 20, 2012).

“So Gazans are an occupied people and have the right to resist, including by armed force (though not to target civilians), while Israel is an occupying power that has an obligation to withdraw – not a right to defend territories it controls or is colonising by dint of military power.

Now, here is the relevant passage from Milne’s latest op-ed, published today (Gaza: this shameful injustice will only end if the cost of it rises, July 16th) at the Guardian:

So the Palestinians of Gaza are an occupied people, like those in the West Bank, who have the right to resist, by force if they choose – though not deliberately to target civilians. But Israel does not have a right of self-defence over territories it illegally occupies – it has an obligation to withdraw.

The only difference between the passages in the two op-eds relates to Milne’s expanded right of resistance. Note that in 2012 it was only Gazans who had the right to engage in acts of terrorism, while in 2014 both Gazans and West Bank Palestinians enjoy the inalienable ‘right’ to kill Israelis. 

However, Milne is consistent in both op-eds with regard to one thing: Israel has no right to defend itself from Hamas terror. 

While Milne’s justification for the intentional killing of Israelis is not surprising given his history of praising anti-imperialist “resistance movements” across the globe, the mere fact that his latest polemic is consistent with his broader political orientation certainly doesn’t make it any less morally repulsive.

The Guardian fetishizes the ‘culture’ of Palestinian terrorism

A May 16th Guardian article by Karma Nabulsi – an Oxford University academic and former PLO representative who previously claimed, at the Guardian, that Palestinian “schoolchildren are blown to bits [by the IDF] while playing’ – which fetishizes Palestinian violence represents a pattern at the media group, whereby contributors and editors support for the ‘right’ of Palestinians to engage in terror attacks against Israelis.

Here are just a few examples: Guardian editors published a letter in January 2011 by a philosophy professor which explicitly defended the right of Palestinians (on moral grounds) to murder Israeli civilians in terror attacks – an editorial decision which was actually defended by their readers’ editor following the uproar which ensued;  In May 2011, the Guardian published an official editorial about the ‘Arab Spring’, and praised the Palestinians for teaching the Arab world how to launch ‘successful’ intifadas; And, in November 2012, during the war in Gaza, Associate Editor Seumas Milne wrote an op-ed explicitly defending the right of Hamas to launch terror attacks against Israelis, and argued that Israel has no such moral right to defend itself.

So, while the May 16th article, titled ‘Artist of the Palestinian revolution‘, on an exhibit featuring Palestinian revolutionary films and art now showing at venues in London (under the slogan “The World is with Us“), comes as little surprise, it’s nonetheless interesting in the way it’s presented, as embodying chic, progressive artistic sensibilities.

headline

Nabulsi’s tale about the glorious nature of the Palestinian revolution begins in the early passages:

In the simplest terms, the story of the Palestinian revolution is a story of the cadres who created it, served it, and gave it both life and force. A people expelled en masse from their homeland, they managed to take matters into their own hands and transform their situation in a most ingenious manner. Initiated by a handful of young refugees, they began to “make their own history”, launching a popular struggle in the late 1960s to regain their homeland and their rights.

However, the PLO was founded in 1964, three years before Israel was ‘occupying’ any Palestinian – or, more accurately, Jordanian – territory, and the (clearly stated) goal of the “popular struggle” was not to “regain their homeland”, but to annihilate the Jewish state.

Nabulsi not only fails to note that the weapons depicted in her beloved Palestinian art were used to murder unarmed Jewish civilians, but characterizes the PLO and other Palestinians terror groups as culturally vibrant, progressive, and humanistic social welfare-based institutions:

Developing factories, institutions, hospitals, schooling and a plethora of ideologies inside an armed struggle throughout the 1970s, Palestinians also created an ebullient revolutionary culture of music, film, poetry, radio, photography, painting and plastic arts, and became the touchstone for revolutionary movements across the world.

Here’s the next terrorist-chic graphic from the exhibit used by Nabulsi:

next

Nabulsi then sums up the movement thusly:

By no means a Marxist revolution (although Marxists were a part of it), it was definitely progressive, and certainly popular. To the revolutionary movements of Africa, Latin America and Asia it was known intimately: Palestine was with the world, just as the world was with Palestine.

This was not merely an anti-colonial or national liberation movement. Comprising the disenfranchised and the dispossessed, and driven by a determination to return home, and to count on themselves alone, meant that the Palestinian cause was not national, nor leftist, but, instead, of the whole people. The culture of return and the armed struggle at the heart of the revolution brought common cause to a people whose country had been destroyed by the Nakba

Since 1964 (the year the PLO was founded), over two thousand Israelis have been murdered, and thousands more maimed, by the “culture of Palestinian armed struggle”.

Finally, we’ll leave you with the trailer from the ‘The World Is With Us” London exhibit promoted by Nabulsi:

 

TWIWU Web Trailer from Palestine Film Foundation on Vimeo.

 

Enhanced by Zemanta

How a Guardian editorial on homophobia in Africa explains their Israel coverage

Post-colonial ideologies…blame the West (particularly the US and Europe) for the ills of the ‘global South’ or the under-developed world, and understate the criticism of dictatorships and terror groups (or liberation movements). In this political culture, Israel and Zionism (Jewish nationalism) are labelled as powerful aggressors intricately connected with Western ‘imperialism’ and ‘neoliberalism’, while Palestinians are automatically labelled as weak victims. – Gerald Steinberg, Fathom

Though the mission of this blog is to combat antisemitism and the assault on Israel’s legitimacy at the Guardian, at times it’s important to look beyond their reports and commentary on Israel and the Palestinian territories (and the broader Middle East) to fully understand the political persuasion which informs their coverage.

A case in point is a recent official Guardian editorial on Uganda’s new anti-gay law (and similar homophobic legislation throughout the continent) titled ‘Homophobia: hatred carried on a Westernly wind.

Here’s some of their March 9th editorial:

It doesn’t take a team of medical experts, such as that commissioned by Kampala, to establish that homosexuality predates western power in Africa, or to work out that far from encouraging homosexuality, the colonialists exported homophobia, in the form of anti-gay legislation then on European statute books. 

In the case of Buganda, the kingdom that formed the heart of present-day Uganda, the British deposed the male monarch on the pretext that he had a harem of page boys.

More recently, homophobia has travelled with a new band of westerners, the American evangelicals, exposed in the documentary God Loves Uganda, in which toothsome Midwesterners preach their message to Africa. Their influence is immense. As the newly out Kenyan novelist Binyavanga Wainaina has noted, whether “in the media, or in conversation” one can “quickly hear almost the exact wording that has been distributed … in the churches.”

In 2009, as their gay “curing” agenda was discredited in the US, three American evangelicals travelled to Kampala to “instruct” thousands of influential Ugandans on how gay men sodomise teenagers and how the gay movement promotes sexual promiscuity. A month after that, a Ugandan politician introduced a bill to create a capital offence of “aggravated homosexuality”. It is a version of this bill that has now been passed by Mr Museveni, and which will open up hundreds of thousands of gay Ugandans to persecution.

So, are three American evangelicals responsible for anti-gay legislation in Uganda, a country which has been independent for over 50 years? And, did the West export homophobia to Africa?

First, as the Washington Post reported, Evangelical leaders in the US have strongly condemned the Ugandan law. And, as one Evangelical who attended the conference in 2009 argued in response to others blaming his community for the legislation, it’s extremely insulting to the Ugandans to suggest that a few American pastors are so powerful that they overwhelmed the intelligence of an entire government.

Additionally, the Guardian editorial fails to note that homosexuality was already illegal in Uganda.  (What the new law did was greatly increase the sentences for such illegal acts.)

Even more relevant to the debate is a Pew Global Poll published in 2013 which showed that a staggering 96 percent of Ugandans don’t believe society should accept homosexuality, strongly suggesting that the new law merely reflected the existence of strongly held (and indigenous) anti-gay attitudes.  

Further, whatever the moral influence of European colonialism, those who are rightfully concerned with the persecution of gays in the world would have to acknowledge that the problem of homophobia is largely centered in Africa and the Middle East.  Though 51 African and Middle East countries have laws explicitly prohibiting gay sex, there is no country in Europe which has such a law. (Though, tellingly, the last holdout in Europe, which only two months ago dropped its law banning homosexuality, was Turkish-Occupied Northern Cyprus.)

Beyond the narrow issue addressed in the editorial, the dynamics at play whereby the Guardian fails to hold independent African states responsible for reactionary legislation passed by their own legislatures helps to understand the dearth of reports at the paper on human rights abuses committed by Palestinians against other Palestinians.  The criticism we direct towards Guardian reports often focus on their failure to hold Palestinians responsible for destructive behavior and cultural attitudes which are illiberal and inimical to peace - a failure to assign moral agency to Arabs and Muslims which is part of a broader ideological tick.  

Many Guardian contributors seem unable to countenance such a politically inconvenient human rights divide in the world – one fundamentally at odds with their post-colonial divide - and so often resort to the most tortured causation in explaining cruelty and violence meted out by ‘the formerly oppressed’. 

This ideology partly explains why the Guardian associate editor Seumas Milne blamed 9/11 on US foreign policy, why Glenn Greenwald similarly blamed terrorist attacks by American Islamists on “horrific violence brought by the US and its allies to the Muslim world”, and why the Guardian religion blogger Andrew Brown blamed the Muslim persecution of Christians in the Mid-East on “the establishment of the state of Israel and its support by Western Christian countries“.

Genuine progressives, it seems, who advocate passionately for a Palestinian state would have to acknowledge that Israel is by any measure the most liberal country in the region, and would have to address the likelihood that a newly independent Palestinian state – regardless of the merits of the Palestinian nationalist movement – will mirror the misogyny, religious intolerance and homophobia which permeates neighboring Arab states.

However, when you base your political analysis on pre-assigned moral roles – a victims’ casuistry in which the correct opinion is invariably derived by ordering the story by virtue of the powerful vs the powerless – then Palestinians are blameless victims, and Israelis (and often Jews qua Jews) will invariably fail to evoke your moral sympathy.

Enhanced by Zemanta

Tyranny of the weak: Why the Guardian will support the next Palestinian Intifada

There are quite a few factors which lead us to believe that many Guardian reporters and editors will likely lend moral support to the Palestinians in the event they launch another deadly intifada.  

Specifically, the paper has shown a clear tendency in the past to license extremist commentators who reject peace and reconciliation with Israel and legitimize (if not justify) Palestinian terrorism.  Additionally, their binary moral paradigm in which Palestinians are seen as immutable victims of Israeli oppression further necessitates at least tacit support for the Palestinians’ recourse to violence. 

First, their promotion of extremism:

In 2011, the Guardian published the leaked ‘Palestine Papers’ and, in an official editorial contextualizing the thousands of pages of “confidential” Palestinian records covering years of negotiations with Israel, harshly criticized Palestinian leaders for showing some alleged reasonableness during negotiations, suggesting that they ‘sold out‘ on Palestinian “rights” such as ‘the right of return’ – characterizing such putative flexibility as “craven”.

The Guardian:

“It is hard to tell who appears worst: the Palestinian leaders, who are weak, craven and eager to shower their counterparts with compliments; 

A well-researched report by Just Journalism in 2011 demonstrated the consistent promotion of voices at ‘Comment is Free’ that reject peace negotiations and even Israel’s very right to exist:

Just Journalism:

The Guardian published more op-eds by Palestinians than by Israelis during  the first half of 2011, with eleven comment pieces by nine Palestinian contributors in comparison with six by four Israelis Three of the Palestinians who contributed op-eds during this period were  either members of Hamas or strongly affiliated with it, and have endorsed  terrorist attacks.  Four further Palestinians were secular nationalists who also reject Israel’s legitimacy and endorse policies that would turn it into an Arab majority state…

Here’s one example demonstrating that the Guardian continued to license even terrorists committed to murdering Jews.

Musa Abumarzuq is deputy head of Hamas's political bureau

Musa Abumarzuq is deputy head of Hamas’s political bureau

Editors also published a letter in 2011 by a philosophy professor which explicitly defended the right of Palestinians to murder Israeli civilians (including, presumably, children) in terror attacks – an editorial decision which was actually defended by their readers’ editor following the uproar which ensued.

Here’s the letter:

Also in 2011, the Guardian editorialized about the ‘Arab Spring’, and actually praised the Palestinians for launching intifadas. 

The Guardian:

The leaders of Fatah and Hamas were obliged to reconcile by the forces stirring the Palestinian street. The negotiators of Fatah had stopped negotiating, and the fighters of Hamas had stopped fighting. Both had to respond to a simple idea: if one million Egyptians can fill Tahrir Square demanding Palestinian rights, why can’t Palestinians, who taught the Arab world how to mount insurrections, and mounted two intifadas of their own.

In 2012, during the war in Gaza (Operation Pillar of Defense) Associate Editor Seumas Milne wrote an op-ed defending the right of Hamas terrorists to launch terror attacks against Israelis, and argued that Israel has no such moral right to defend itself. 

Seumas Milne:

“So Gazans are an occupied people and have the right to resist, including by armed force (though not to target civilians), while Israel is an occupying power that has an obligation to withdraw – not a right to defend territories it controls or is colonising by dint of military power.

Even if Israel had genuinely ended its occupation in 2005, Gaza’s people are Palestinians, and their territory part of the 22% of historic Palestine earmarked for a Palestinian state that depends on Israeli withdrawal from the occupied West Bank and east Jerusalem. Across their land, Palestinians have the right to defend and arm themselves, whether they choose to exercise it or not.”

Emboldened by the wave of change and growing support across the region, Hamas has also regained credibility as a resistance force, which had faded since 2009, and strengthened its hand against an increasingly discredited Palestinian Authority leadership in Ramallah in Ramallah. The deployment of longer-range rockets that have now been shown to reach Tel Aviv and Jerusalem is also beginning to shift what has been an overwhelmingly one-sided balance of deterrence

Oppressor vs. Oppressed Paradigm: 

In addition to what seems to be an almost fetishization of Palestinian political violence, the binary, oppressor-oppressed political framework in which they see the conflict seems to necessitate that they suspend moral judgment when dealing with what they see as the ‘weaker party’.  This moral tick betrayed itself in their 2011 editorial on the Palestine Papers noted above, where they opined about the notes released from the 2008 negotiations between Ehud Olmert and Mahmoud Abbas:

Guardian:

It is hard to tell who appears worst: the Palestinian leaders, who are weak, craven and eager to shower their counterparts with compliments; the Israelis, who are polite in word but contemptuous in deed; or the Americans, whose neutrality consists of bullying the weak and holding the hand of the strong

More recently, an official Guardian editorial on the current peace process (Israeli-Palestinian talks: perpetual motion, Jan. 1, 2014), began thus:

The secret of perpetual motion eludes scientists but sometimes seems close to being grasped by those involved in the so-called Israeli-Palestinian peace process. That process has too often been about avoiding peace rather than about achieving it. Movement with no other purpose except to suggest something useful is being done mocks the Palestinians, who have been waiting for more than a generation for a measure of justice.

It is important that the responsibility for this failure is assigned correctly, with the greatest part belonging to Israel, the next largest share to the United States and only the smallest portion to the Palestinians. They have been difficult and sometimes slippery negotiators, and they may – it is arguable – have missed some serious opportunities in the past. But there are two points that must always be borne in mind with the Palestinians: they are the aggrieved party; and they are by far the weakest party.

Indeed much of the Guardian’s world view seems dictated by such platitudes about the virtues of the putatively powerless.

As Guardian cartoonist Martin Rowson said in defense of his notorious cartoon (during the Mavi Marmara row) which used biblical imagery in depicting murderous Israeli troops killing the dove of peace, while another soldier aimed his weapon at two unicorns:

 I do my level best to stick to the protocols of alternative comedy of the early 1980s, as well as to HL Mencken’s useful nostrum about afflicting the comfortable and comforting the afflicted. In other words, I only attack people more powerful than me

Glenn Greenwald, the Guardian’s star reporter until late last summer, said at a conference of socialists recently that if you are pleasing the people in power…your job is not journalism.

Much of the Guardian’s shift editorially from the Zionist sympathies under its long time editor and owner CP Scott to their current pro-Palestinianism can arguably be traced to the way in which many on the left began to accept previously marginal theories on the necessity of understanding political affairs in the context of the relationship between the powerful and the powerless.  

Such elites soured on the Jewish State once (in the years following the Six Day War) they were no longer viewed as the underdog besieged on all sides by more powerful foes but, instead, as the confident, successful and militarily dominant modern state.  The Jewish people’s greatest sin, argued Pascal Bruckner, was “having emerged from their immemorial weakness” and, by “fearlessly resorting to force”, betrayed the role of victim that had always been assigned to them.

However, more sober minds would surely understand that Israel’s virtue is not dependent upon either its power relationship with its foes, but, rather, by the inherent justness of its cause: its exceptional tolerance towards religious, ethnic and sexual minorities; the strength, vitality and endurance of its democracy; the dynamism of its economy and disproportionate quantity of scientific advances, and the fact that it continues to faithfully carry out one of its primary missions, to serve as a refuge and safe haven for Jews everywhere – a role Theodore Herzl characterized as “the Guardian of the Jews”.  

Similarly, any intellectually credible assessment of the Palestinian people – one not compromised by the bigotry of low expectations – must avoid the temptation of seeing Palestinians as abstractions, and instead view them as complex political actors who are morally accountable for their decisions.  Those who suggest that Palestinians have no choice but to walk into pizza parlors and ignite suicide vests, sending thousands of pieces of shrapnel coursing through the limbs and organs of innocent men, women and children - all of whom are ‘powerless’ to resist the tyranny of such wanton violence – are not only negating the humanity of the Israeli victim, but denying the moral agency of the Palestinian perpetrator.

If negotiations between Israel and the Palestinians do break down, the Palestinians will still retain the power to freely decide whether to continue pursuing their interests through the political arena, or to return to the path of violence and destruction.  If they choose the latter, then Palestinians, and Palestinians alone, will bear moral responsibility for the unimaginable consequences.

And, if the worst does indeed happen, and Israelis are forced once again to bear the burden of a malicious campaign of terror, then the chances are good that Guardian editorials will fly off the presses ‘contextualizing’ the violence as understandable (if regrettable) last resort of the ‘downtrodden’, while all but ignoring their ‘more powerful’ victims.

Genuinely liberal voices, of course, would never countenance such a facile ethical response to a nihilistic, malevolent course of action, and would certainly never succumb to the fool’s moral calculus which equates weakness with virtue.

Enhanced by Zemanta

Thoughts on the Guardian while at the Global Forum for Combating Antisemitism

EncJud_anti-semitism-band3-kolonne143-144a-karikatur-Rothschild-1898

Along with my CAMERA colleagues, I’ve been participating in the Global Forum for Combating Antisemtism, a three-day conference in Jerusalem organized to allow activists from around the world the opportunity to strategize on best practices in combating the various manifestations of anti-Jewish racism.

During one of the plenary sessions, I was able to ask Itamar Marcus of Palestinian Media Watch if he could shed some light on a phenomenon addressed often at this blog: the Guardian’s consistent failure, when reporting on the Israeli-Palestinian Conflict, to report on the pervasive  antisemitism within the Arab and Muslim Middle East – what we’ve characterized as their glaring antisemitic sins of omission.

Marcus replied to my query concerning the putatively liberal media group’s silence in the face of such bigotry by suggesting that Guardian contributors may find it easier to accept the ‘grievance excuse’ rather than acknowledging the existence of hateful, violent ideologies.  Those who embrace the ‘grievance excuse’ argue, with varying degrees of explicitness, that it is indeed Jewish (or Israeli) behavior which often incites anti-Jewish racism and violence.

One moral corollary of the grievance excuse for antisemitism pertains to the similar tendency to contextualize terrorist attacks by radicalized Muslim citizens of Western countries  as understandable responses to U.S. or UK foreign policy – a narrative advanced, among others, by Glenn Greenwald, Seumas Milne and Rachel Shabi.  

Though the lethal terror attack against Lee Rigby in London by Michael Adebowale did not have an antisemitic component, the failure by these Guardian commentators to deal honestly with the extremist, reactionary interpretation of Islam which inspired his unimaginable savagery follows the same antisemitic logic, denying moral agency to the perpetrator while demanding a moral accounting from the victim.

‘Jews’, the Israeli Holocaust Studies professor Yehuda Bauer insisted during his keynote speech at the Forum, just a few minutes ago, “don’t cause antisemitism’.  ‘Only antisemitic logic and ideology causes antisemitism’, he declared.

While we should acknowledge our inability to know with any degree of certainty whether Judeophobia haunts the thoughts of the Guardian contributors we scrutinize, the intellectual poverty which feeds their polemical obfuscations and moral abdications in the face of even the most grotesque expressions of Jew hatred is undeniable, and shameful.

Top 10 warning signs you may be a ‘Guardian Left’ anti-Semite

H/T Seumas

The Guardian’s associate editor Seumas Milne – who, in case it needs reminding, worked for the pro-Stalinist communist publication ‘Straight Left’ earlier in his career – was kind enough to Tweet a link to a piece in Foreign Policy Magazine by Stephen Walt.

The piece is titled ‘Top 10 warning signs you are a liberal imperialist‘.

The essay itself, written by the co-author of a book widely condemned for its shoddy scholarship and for arguing that Jews wield too much power in Washington, D.C., is unintentionally quite comical – a kind of ‘Western Guilt-Driven Guide to the Universe for Dummies’ – and includes, as #1, the following:

You frequently find yourself advocating that the United States send troops, drones, weapons, Special Forces, or combat air patrols to some country that you have never visited, whose language(s) you don’t speak, and that you never paid much attention to until bad things started happening there.

Whilst I don’t speak fluent academic-ese like the esteemed Harvard professor, I have become adept at deciphering an even more obscure dialect – the language of the Guardian Left.

So, in the spirit of Walt’s mockery of those who ‘unknowingly’ are compromised by a deep-seeded imperialism lurking in their subconscious, here is CiF Watch’s own ‘Top 10 warning signs you may be a Guardian Left anti-Semite – a list, per the links below, inspired by real life Guardianistas!)

1. You claim the mantle of human rights yet find yourself running interference for anti-Semitic world leaders and helping to spread the propaganda of Islamist extremists - and even terrorist leaders who openly call for the murder of Jews.

2.  You claim to condemn racism at every opportunity yet are strangely silent or seriously downplay even the most egregious examples of antisemitic violence.

3. You claim to be a champion of progressive politics yet often use terms and advance tropes indistinguishable from classic right wing Judeophobia - such as the argument that Jews are too powerful, use their money to control politics, and are not loyal citizens.

4. You support nationalism, and don’t have a problem with the existence of more than 50 Muslim states, yet you oppose the existence of the only Jewish state in the world.

5. Even when putatively condemning antisemitism you can’t help but blame the Jews for causing antisemitism.

6. You condemn the Holocaust yet also obsessively condemn living Jews for their alleged ‘inhumanity’ and even argue that Jews haven’t learned the proper lessons from the attempt to annihilate their co-religionists from the planet.

7. You not only support Palestinian rights, but support their “right” to launch deadly terrorist attacks on Israeli Jews, under the mantle of anti-imperialist “resistance”.

8. You characterize extremist reactionary Islamist movements as “progressive“.

9. You accuse Jews of cynically misusing the charge of antisemitism to “stifledebate about the Jewish state.

10. You champion diversity and multiculturalism of all kinds, yet suggest that Jewish particularism represents an inherently tribal, ethnocentric and racist identity.

I’m sure there are more than ten – so please feel free to add to our list in the comment section below.

(This post was revised at 15:15 EST to correct a mistake concerning Seumas Milne’s work at Straight Left.)

Guardian’s Milne diligently promotes Assad propaganda

It is the publication of thinly veiled ideologically inspired polemics such as the one by Seumas Milne on the subject of Syria which appeared in the ‘Comment is Free’ section of the Guardian on May 7th that has done so much to destroy that paper’s reputation as an organ of serious journalism.

Milne’s puerile student rag-style rant against “The West and its allies” predictably devotes a good deal of column space to Israel from its very beginning.

“If anyone had doubts that Syria’s gruesome civil war is already spinning into a wider Middle East conflict, the events of the past few days should have laid them to rest. Most ominous was Israel’s string of aerial attacks on Syrian military installations near Damascus, reportedly killing more than 100.

The bombing raids, unprovoked and illegal, were of course immediately supported by the US and British governments. Since Israel has illegally occupied Syria’s Golan Heights for 46 years, perhaps the legitimacy of a few more air raids hardly merited serious consideration.”

According to whom or what (apart from his own opinion) these alleged air strikes are “illegal” is an issue with which Milne does not trouble his readers, failing to produce any source or factual backing for his mud-slinging accusation. But even more jaw-dropping is Milne’s use of the word “unprovoked”. Obviously, Milne cannot be unaware of the existence of UN SC resolution 1701 which reiterates the previously recognised need to disband and disarm all militias – including and especially Hizballah – in Lebanon and prohibits the sale or supply of arms into Lebanon except with the authorization of its government. 

Milne’s description of an alleged defensive air strike on a banned consignment of advanced missiles destined for a terrorist militia which should – according to the UN – have been disarmed and disbanded nine years ago, as “unprovoked” is therefore ridiculous enough in itself. The fact that those weapons would be likely to be used against civilian targets in at least one Middle Eastern country makes Milne’s use of the words “unprovoked and illegal” nothing less than malevolent.

Next Milne comes up with a fine example of baseless rhetoric designed to paint Israel as a favoured protectorate of the West.

“But it’s only necessary to consider what the western reaction would have been if Syria, let alone Iran, had launched such an attack on Israel – or one of the Arab regimes currently arming the Syrian rebels – to realise how little these positions have to do with international legality, equity or rights of self-defence.”

In fact, we already know the answer to Milne’s ‘hypothetical’ question, and it is not the one he implies. Iran has – via its proxies Hizballah and Hamas, and enabled by its ally Syria – been launching attacks on Israel for well over a decade. The “western reaction” to thousands of Iranian made and/or financed missiles fired at Israeli civilian communities in the south of Israel since the Gaza Strip disengagement in 2005 has been an occasional tame and meaningless finger-wagging punctuated by shrill hypocritical condemnation whenever Israel takes action to defend its civilians. The same is the case on Israel’s northern border where around four thousand missile attacks were launched at Israeli civilians in 34 days by a terrorist militia which the international community had previously vowed – and failed – to dismantle. The “western reaction” to Israeli actions in defence of its civilians was, once again, hypocritical condemnation of those actions. 

In the subsequent paragraphs Milne tries to advance a patently ridiculous theme prevalent in Syrian regime propaganda whereby Israel has thrown in its lot with the rebel forces in that country. He also makes the accusation that Israel is “clearly intervening in the war”, based on deliberately contorted “evidence”.

“…  Israeli officials have been pushing claims that the Syrian regime has used chemical weapons. Since Obama declared that the use of chemical weapons would cross a “red line”, allegations of their use have become a crucial weapon for those demanding increased western intervention, in a bizarre echo of the discredited orchestration of the invasion of Iraq a decade ago.”

One senior IDF officer stated that there is reason to believe that the Assad regime has used chemical weapons. To interpret that as “Israeli officials have been pushing claims” of course requires an exceptionally blinkered imagination, especially as British and French sources had made the exact same observations prior to Itai Brun’s statement. Milne continues:

“That effort came unstuck this week when the UN investigator Carla Del Ponte reported that there were “strong concrete suspicions” that Syrian rebels had themselves used the nerve gas sarin. The claim was hurriedly downplayed by the US, though the rebel camp clearly has an interest in drawing in greater western intervention, in a way the regime does not.”

Perhaps deliberately, Milne fails to inform readers that the UN quickly distanced itself from Del Ponte’s remarks.

” “The Independent International Commission of Inquiry on the Syrian Arab Republic wishes to clarify that it has not reached conclusive findings as to the use of chemical weapons in Syria by any parties to the conflict,” the U.N. said in a statement. “As a result, the commission is not in a position to further comment on the allegations at this time.”

Later on, Milne once again rolls out the Syrian regime propaganda:

“The irony of the US and other western governments – let alone Israel – once again making common cause with al-Qaida, after a decade of a “war on terror” aimed at destroying it, is one factor holding Obama back.”

Like his ideological heroes in Damascus, Milne probably does not for one moment really believe that Israel is collaborating with Al Qaeda or – no less absurdly – that Al Qaida would agree to join forces with Israel. Such nonsense is just part of the propaganda strategy of the Assad regime.

When such clearly identifiable absurdities come out of the Presidential Palace in Damascus, those who know the Middle East well are not surprised. Professional journalists take such bizarre claims in context. Political activists ideologically aligned with the Assad dictatorship repeat and even embellish such fatuities. 

With this article, Seumas Milne once again makes it patently clear to which of those categories he belongs. 

Guardian removes claim about Iran’s nuclear “weapons” program from ‘the pages of time’

If you go to the Guardian’s business page you’ll see a report by Rupert Neate about a British company which allegedly earned millions of pounds selling goods to Iran, “including to a state-owned firm that supplies the regime’s nuclear programme”

The title of the report, as it now appears, is “Glencore traded with Iranian supplier to nuclear programme”.

after

However, the if you go back in time a few days (to a cached page), you can see the title they originally used: “Glencore traded with Iranian supplier to nuclear weapons’s programme”.  

orig

Cached page, as it originally appeared

At some point after the story was published on April 21 the word “weapons” was deleted from title.

Whilst we’ll likely never know for sure what prompted the Guardian “correction” to the evidently counter-revolutionary suggestion that Iran is working on a nuclear weapons program, the paper’s history in denying the obvious about the regime’s nuclear ambitions provides some context.

For instance, there was Seumas Milne’s attempt, in a 2011 Comment is Free post, to obfuscate on the issue, which included an urgent plea for readers to prevent a “covert US-Israeli campaign against Tehran” from exploding into a global war.  He further argued that “a US-Israeli stealth war against Iran” would be “shocking” as “the case against Iran is so spectacularly flimsy.” He concluded thusly:

“There is in fact no reliable evidence that Iran is engaged in a nuclear weapons programme…. the evidence suggests Iran suspended any weapons programme in 2003 and has not reactivated it.”

In fact nothing could be further than the truth.  A Nov. 2011 IAEA Report included the following conclusions:

  • Iran has been conducting research and experiments geared to developing a nuclear weapons capability
  • Iran had carried out tests relevant to the development of a nuclear device.

Even a Guardian story (which included a pdf of the full IAEA report) characterized the IAEA findings as establishing that that “Iran appears to be on a structured path to building a nuclear weapon.”  Further, as recently as early April 2013, IAEA head Yukiya Amano said in an interview that his agency “has information indicating that Iran was engaged in activities relevant to the development of nuclear explosive devices in the past and now.”

But the award for great achievements in ideologically driven propaganda goes to their former veteran journalist Brian Whitaker, who actually served as the Guardian’s Middle East editor for seven years.  In a ‘CiF’ piece in Nov. 2011 titled “Why do the US media believe the worse about Iran?”, Whitaker not only ignored IAEA reports but suggested that the clandestine Iranian program may not even be a military program at all, but merely a ‘peaceful civilian project’ to manufacture nanodiamonds.

nanodiamonds

Nanodiamonds – a substance used in polishing compositions, coatings, lubricants and polymers.

Though the question of whether or not the Islamist regime in Iran will be able to successfully carry out their mission to develop nuclear weapons depends on the resolve of Western political and opinion leaders to stand up to the threat, the Mullahs in Tehran can always count on the Guardian Left to run interference on their clear aspirations to regional hegemony.

The moral ‘trooferism’ of Richard Falk and the Guardian’s Seumas Milne

Richard-Falk-Memo1UN official Richard Falk, a self-professed believer in 9/11 conspiracy theories, has been widely condemned for arguing that the Boston terror attack was the result of US foreign policy, as well as Obama’s recent trip to Israel, in a commentary in the April 21 edition of Foreign Policy Journal.

Falk said the Boston Marathon bombings – which killed three and injured over 180 – were “expected” given Washington’s ongoing policies around the world, especially its support for Israel and its military involvement in the Middle East.

“The American global domination project is bound to generate all kinds of resistance…the United States has been fortunate not to experience worse blowbacks,” wrote Falk

Falk added the following on the Boston attacks:

“It is horrible, but we in this country should not be too surprised, given our drone attacks that have killed women and children attending weddings and funerals in Afghanistan and Pakistan.” 

American leaders, argued Falk towards the end of his Foreign Policy Journal essay, “don’t have the courage to connect some of these dots.”

It’s interesting that, up until now, it seems that even the most ardent critics of American foreign policy haven’t attributed blame to the U.S. for the Boston Marathon bombings, and, encouragingly, the comments by Falk (who also has a history of antisemitism) elicited a strong rebuke from, among others, US Ambassador Susan Rice.

American politicians may not, as Falk complained, have the “courage to connect the dots“, but the Guardian’s associate editor Seumas Milne seems to, as least based on his recent ‘Comment is Free’ entry on April 23.  Though his piece deals with the ‘scandal’ of the continuing use of Guantánamo Bay to hold enemy combatants, Milne was able to seamlessly tie in the Boston bombing towards the end of his essay, where he wrote the following:

We don’t yet know the motivations of the two men accused of carrying out last week’s atrocity in Boston, which killed three people and seriously injured many more. But we do know that 61 were killed the same day in bomb attacks in Iraq that were blamed on al-Qaida, brought to the country by the US-British invasion. And 16 were killed in Pakistan the following day in a suicide attack claimed by the Pakistani Taliban, which mushroomed as a result of the invasion of Afghanistan.

What is certain is that so long as the US and its allies intervene, occupy and wage war across the Arab and Muslim world – whether directly or by proxy, with daisy cuttersor drones – such outrages [such as the Boston attack] will continue. It’s the logic of a war of terror without end.

So, although Milne evidently “doesn’t yet know the motivations of the two men accused of carrying out last week’s atrocity in Boston”, he does know enough about the attack to claim that such “outrages” will continue “so long as US and its allies intervene, occupy and wage war across the Arab and Muslim world”.

Milne_sqThe only surprise about Milne’s decision to publish an essay implicitly blaming American policy in the Middle East for the deadly attacks targeting innocent American citizens by two Islamist-inspired terrorists is that he waited over a week since the bombing to do so.

If you recall, a mere two days after the 9/11 attacks which killed nearly 3000 Americans, Milne complained, at ‘Comment is Free’, that “most Americans simply don’t get…why the United States is hated with such bitterness, not only in Arab and Muslim countries, but across the developing world”.

Milne expressed bitterness that only a minority of Americans were likely to “make the connection between what has been visited upon them and what their government has visited upon large parts of the world”, though it was vital they “make that connection…if such tragedies are not to be repeated.”

 He added that the US was “reaping a dragon’s teeth harvest” it had itself sowed.

Although the Guardian associate editor hasn’t gone so far as to claim, as Falk has, that 9/11 was an inside job, Milne and his political allies on the far left who continually blame the US and its support for Israel – for deadly attacks targeting its civilians by reactionary and malevolent Islamist terrorists are advancing an equally insidious lie, one which obfuscates cause and effect and blurs the ethical distinction between victim and perpetrator.

Whilst 9/11 conspiracy theories are rightly mocked as a vice of the intellectually deficient, and the mendacious propaganda of extremists, the moral ‘trooferism’ of those whose contempt for America, Israel and the West inspires such a spectacular misunderstanding of the civilizational dividing lines in our time should similarly be named and shamed as the dangerous political charlatans they are.

The Guardian’s Seumas Milne cynically exploits a Holocaust survivor

Seumas Milne’s Yom HaShoah Tweet was a few days late, but it seems that his delay in honoring the millions of Jewish victims was merely the result of the Guardian assistant editor’s patience – waiting for just the right opportunity to  cynically exploit the words of a Holocaust survivor to advance his own political ends.

Yesterday, Milne Tweeted the following:

The link takes you to the blog of Richard Silverstein - who recently was exposed shamefully using rhetoric to impute Israel-Nazi analogies - where he cites a survivor named Havka Folman-Raban, who said the following in a ceremony attended by Israeli youth at the Ghetto Fighters’ House Museum in northern Israel:

Continue the rebellion.  A different rebellion of the here and now against evil, even the evil befalling our own and only beloved country.  Rebel against racism and violence and hatred of those who are different.  Against inequality, economic gaps, poverty, greed and corruption.

Strengthen humanistic education and values of ethics and justice.  These too are [a form of] rebellion against alcoholism among our youth and the terrible phenomenon of attacks against the elderly.

Rebel against the Occupation. No–it is forbidden for us to rule over another people, to oppress another [people]The most important thing is to achieve peace and an end to the cycle of blood[letting].  My generation dreamed of peace.  I so want to achieve it.  You have the power to help.  All my hopes are with you.  If only [you could].

Folman-Raban was expressing her hope, in the context of a longer humanistic message about the need to overcome social and economic problems in the Jewish state (her “beloved country”),  that the occupation should end (as with the Israeli-Palestinian Conflict more broadly) in a decidedly peaceful manner.

Contrary to Folman’s-Raban’s message of non-violence, the “rebellion” Milne himself has ‘dared’ to imagine is not of the non-violent Gandhi variety but, rather, the bloody ‘resistance’ of Arafat.

On Nov. 20, Milne, in a column at ‘Comment is Free’, explicitly justified the murder of Israelis by Palestinian terrorists, while simultaneously arguing that, “as an occupying power” in Gaza, Israel DOES NOT have the right to defend itself.  Here are the relevant passages:

“So Gazans are an occupied people and have the right to resist, including by armed force (though not to target civilians), while Israel is an occupying power that has an obligation to withdraw – not a right to defend territories it controls or is colonising by dint of military power.

Even if Israel had genuinely ended its occupation in 2005, Gaza’s people are Palestinians, and their territory part of the 22% of historic Palestine earmarked for a Palestinian state that depends on Israeli withdrawal from the occupied West Bank and east Jerusalem. Across their land, Palestinians have the right to defend and arm themselves, whether they choose to exercise it or not.”

A few days later, he spoke at a London rally, sponsored by ‘Stop The War Coalition, again inciting violence against Israelis.

Anyone familiar with the political stylings of Milne – who worked for the communist rag ‘Straight Left’ earlier in his career - would not be surprised that he’d shill for Hamas.  However, the mere predictability of his most recent apologia for Islamist resistance and abuse of Holocaust memory doesn’t render it any less odious.  

BBC Watch report reveals the malice of Seumas Milne’s anti-Israel propaganda

As our sister site, BBC Watch, recently reported, on November 5, about an article in the Middle East section of the BBC reported the following:

“A Palestinian has died after being hit by Israeli gunfire as he approached Gaza’s border fence with Israel.

The Israeli military said the man was shot after ignoring warnings to stop. Palestinian medics said the man was unarmed and mentally ill.”

The same incident was cynically exploited by the Guardian’s Seumas Milne in his ‘Comment is Free’ essay on Nov. 20, which explicitly endorsed the right of Palestinians to commit acts of terrorism against Israelis (while rejecting the right of Israelis to defend themselves), titled ‘It’s Palestinians who have the right to defend themselves‘.

Milne wrote:

“In fact, an examination of the sequence of events over the last month shows that Israel played the decisive role in the military escalation: from its attack on a Khartoum arms factory reportedly supplying arms to Hamas and the killing of 15 Palestinian fighters in late October, to the shooting of a mentally disabled Palestinian in early November, the killing of a 13 year-old in an Israeli incursion and, crucially, the assassination of the Hamas commander Ahmed Jabari last Wednesday during negotiations over a temporary truce.”

[emphasis added in both quotes]

The man shot near the border fence (mentioned by the BBC and Milne) was named by Palestinian sources as Ahmed Tawfiq ‘Awadh al Nabahin. The Palestinian Centre for Human Rights (PCHR), which purports to document all casualties in Gaza, stated the day after the incident that al Nabahin suffered from epilepsy.

As Hadar Sela of BBC Watch noted, epilepsy is not a “mental illness” or a “mental disability” but, rather, a neurological condition.

Further, The Meir Amit Intelligence and Terrorism Information Centre’s weekly report for the the week of October 31 to November 6 reports as follows:

“On the evening of November 4 an IDF force identified a suspicious Palestinian approaching the security fence. They called to him to halt and fired shots in the air. However, when he did not comply and continued towards the fence, he was shot and killed (IDF Spokesman, November 5, 2012).

The Palestinian media reported the death of Ahmed Tawfiq al-Nabahin, 23, a resident of Juhr al-Dik. The reports claimed he was “mentally disturbed.” A picture of the same “mentally disturbed” individual, wearing a body-armor vest and armed with a rifle, was posted on the Hamas forum…Hamas posted a notice of al-Nabahin’s death on its website and appealed to the residents of the Al-Bureij refugee camp to participate in his funeral. His body was wrapped in the Hamas flag (Alresala.net website and Safa News Agency, November 5, 2012). (Safa News Agency, November 5, 2012)”

al-nabahin

So, the ‘martyr’ in Milne’s tale was, in fact, a Hamas member who likely had epilepsy.

Moreover, the case represents another example of Israel being held to expectations that no army in the world could meet.  

In the case of Ahmed Tawfiq al-Nabahin, the IDF was somehow supposed to make a split second assessment of the security threat posed by a Palestinian approaching their border, determine whether he was armed, and, evidently, complete a psychological and neurological assessment of the suspect before taking action to prevent a possible terror attack.  

In other words, even if Tawfiq al-Nabahin was mentally disabled (which he evidently wasn’t), how could any security force have possibly made that determination while the border breach was occurring?

The truth, as plainly revealed by Milne’s Nov. 20 essay, is that the Guardian associate editor doesn’t seem to much care whether Israelis (faced with such terror attacks) live or if they die.  

However, it is the duty of those who lay claim to truly universal human rights to call out such crude propaganda and double standards – especially when such moral malice insidiously passes as ‘liberal’ commentary.

Guardian features prominently in watchdog group’s ‘Top 10 Media Fails of the Gaza War’

HonestReporting published their ‘Top 10 Media Fails of the Gaza War‘ and the Guardian claimed the number 5 and 9 slots.

Placing at number 5 was Steve Bell’s cartoon of hapless British statesmen being controlled by a seemingly omnipotent Jewish leader.

bell

HonestReporting’s Alex Margolin wrote the following about the cartoon:

“When it comes to building a Hall of Shame in coverage of the media war against Israel, you can always count on The Guardian to compete for a high place on the list. And this year is no exception.

This cartoon of Benjamin Netanyahu published on the first days of the war offers so many different aspects of media bias, it’s hard to pick out the worst ones. Start with a classic anti-Semitic trope of Israel manipulating and controlling Western leaders. Then there is the strong implication that the real motive behind Israel’s operation is to manipulate the election.”

Seumas Milne’s essay’s explicitly endorsing the right of Palestinians to kill Israelis placed at number 9.

milne

Margolin:

It takes a man of extraordinary bias to look at thousands of rockets flying into Israeli cities, and to conclude, despite all evidence, that it’s the Palestinians and not the Israelis who have the right to defend themselves. Seamus Milne is that kind of man.

“To portray Israel as some kind of victim with every right to “defend itself” from attack from “outside its borders” is a grotesque inversion of reality,” he writes, dismissing the 2005 withdrawal from Gaza as irrelevant.

“So Gazans are an occupied people and have the right to resist, including by armed force (though not to target civilians), while Israel is an occupying power that has an obligation to withdraw – not a right to defend territories it controls or is colonising by dint of military power,” he adds.

It’s unclear which war Milne is watching, but the Palestinian attacks consisted of nothing but attacks on civilians and Israel has already withdrawn entirely from Gaza. Talk about a grotesque inversion of reality, Seamus…you lead the way in showing how it’s done.

You can read the complete top 10 list here.

If you recall, the Guardian was also the undisputed winner of HonestReporting’s 2011 Dishonest Reporting’ Award.  

Seumas Milne tells thousands at London rally that Palestinians have a right to kill Israelis

On Nov. 20 at ‘Comment is Free’ the Guardian’s Associate Editor, Seumas Milne, explicitly justified the murder of Israelis by Palestinian terrorists, while simultaneously arguing that, as an occupying power, Israel has no right to defend itself. 

“So Gazans are an occupied people and have the right to resist, including by armed force (though not to target civilians), while Israel is an occupying power that has an obligation to withdraw – not a right to defend territories it controls or is colonising by dint of military power.

Even if Israel had genuinely ended its occupation in 2005, Gaza’s people are Palestinians, and their territory part of the 22% of historic Palestine earmarked for a Palestinian state that depends on Israeli withdrawal from the occupied West Bank and east Jerusalem. Across their land, Palestinians have the right to defend and arm themselves, whether they choose to exercise it or not.”

So, as long as terrorists who launch violent lethal assaults against Israelis, including suicide bombings and rocket attacks, can claim they weren’t specifically targeting civilians, killing Israelis is justified – a refrain which Milne repeated to an anti-Israel rally on Nov. 24 sponsored by ‘Stop The War Coalition.

(Milne’s rhetorical flourish about the Palestinians’ “right to resist” can be seen in the video at roughly 1:20.)

 

Milne’s CiF essay, as with his speech on Nov. 24, represents incitement – the moral legitimization of lethal attacks against Israelis by the most extreme antisemitic movements in the Middle East under the banner of national liberation, indeed under the guise of “liberalism”!

The malice of the Guardian Left has rarely been on clearer display. 

Minutes after Tel Aviv terror attack, Glenn Greenwald praises Seumas Milne’s defense of ‘armed resistance’

At a little past noon today a terrorist attacked Israeli civilians on a bus traveling through Central Tel Aviv, injuring 21.

Hamas claimed responsibility for the attack. 

Here are a few highlights from Glenn Greenwald’s latest post, ‘The “both-sides-are-awful” dismissal of Gaza ignores the key role of the US government, Nov. 21, published roughly 20 minutes after the attack.

“Israel has turned Gaza “into an open-air prison that is designed to collectively punish hundreds of thousands of human beings.

the US government is doing nothing of the sort. It is fueling, funding and feeding the Israeli war machine, and, with its own militaristic conduct, is legitimizing the premises of Israeli aggression.”

Greenwald also praises the recent essay by Seumas Milne:

“As my Guardian colleague Seumas Milne superbly detailed in his column Tuesday night, the overarching fact of this conflict is that the Palestinians, for decades now, have been brutally occupied, blockaded, humiliated, deprived of the most basic human rights of statehood and autonomy though the continuous application of brute, lawless force (for that reason, those who like to righteously condemn Hamas’ rockets (Pierce, defending Obama; “he happened to be correct the other day. No country can tolerate the bombing of its citizens”) have the obligation to state what form of legitimate resistance Palestinians have to all of this). [emphasis added]

That one should vehemently condemn rocket attacks on civilians and bombs on Tel Aviv buses outside of an Israeli military facility does not mean sanctioning the years-long fueling of the Israeli side of this conflict by the US government.” [emphasis added]

First, what significance does Greenwald place in the fact that the civilian bus happened to be near an Israeli military facility?

The military facility wasn’t targeted – innocent men, women and children were.

More importantly, however, here’s the key passage from the piece by Milne ‘It’s Palestinians who have the right to defend themselves” - an essay which Greenwald praised as superb.

“So Gazans are an occupied people and have the right to resist, including by armed force (though not to target civilians), while Israel is an occupying power that has an obligation to withdraw – not a right to defend territories it controls or is colonising by dint of military power.”

Milne is, in effect, defending Palestinian terrorism while arguing that Israel has no right to defend itself.

Greenwald’s own vitriol evokes a crude caricature of a villainous Israel, suggests there is no moral difference between Islamic extremists and a Jewish democracy, and he also evidently sympathizes with the moral logic of those who champion the “right” of Palestinians to murder Israelis.

Hamas simply couldn’t ask for more effective hasbara.

Guardian claims Hamas scored political points from photo of Egypt PM cradling dead baby

An official Guardian editorial (Gaza: storm before the quiet, Nov. 21) on talks of a ceasefire between Israel and Hamas cited legitimate claims of victory both sides could make if a truce is signed.

[Netanyahu] can say that while Gilad Shalit is back with his family, the man who kidnapped him, Hamas’s military chief Ahmed al-Jaabari, is dead; he can say that the stock of missiles in Gaza is depleted and that the Iron Dome missile defence system proved itself. He can say the operation gave the lie to those who claimed Israel cannot act militarily now that the regional environment has been changed by the Arab spring. 

Now, here’s the Guardian assessment of what Hamas will gain:

“Hamas has a different narrative. Whether a ceasefire takes effect or not, they will say their rockets established their reach over the majority of the population from Jerusalem to north of Tel Aviv. And far from being wiped out in the initial Israeli bombardment, they kept firing to the very end.”

Then, parroting Seumas Milne’s recent triumphant polemic about Hamas’ ‘victory’ in establishing themselves as the main Palestinian resistance movement, the editorial continues:

“At home, Hamas will have reaffirmed its role as the main resistance to the occupation – a role which it was in danger of surrendering to competitive militant groups in the Gaza Strip.” [emphasis added]

The editorial continues:

“More significant, Hamas claims, would be the political gains achieved during the past traumatic week – the pictures of the Egyptian prime minister and Turkish foreign minister clutching dead Gazan children, the stream of visits and support from the entire Arab League. What did the Palestinian president, Mahmoud Abbas, sitting all on his own in Ramallah get? Tony Blair.” [emphasis added]

It is worth noting that the Guardian is once again suggesting that Hamas, unlike the “craven” Palestinian leaders in Fatah, is more deserving of our moral sympathy, more justified in claiming the mantle of the authentic Palestinian resistance movement. 

Further, the picture of the Egyptian prime minister clutching a dead Gazan child, which the Guardian is referring to, is an incident which was revealed to be a fraud.

Though media reports initially claimed the child in question, 4-year-old Mahmoud Sadallah, was killed by an Israeli strike, it later was revealed that he was almost certainly killed by an errant Hamas rocket.

This cynical manipulation of a dead Palestinian boy to score public relation points should be a source of shame for Hamas, not a source of pride.  

However, as long as the Guardian remains enamored of Hamas, and sympathetic to their claims of legitimacy, don’t expect even the most specious moral and political claims by the Islamist group to be subjected to critical scrutiny.