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« Israel Shuts RAM-FM Jerusalem Studio | Main | If Bullard, why not Zapiro? »

April 10, 2008



Bigots of the world have an easy traget to focus on and get away with it - "The zionist entity and the zionists'.
You can even suport the killing of children if they are 'zionist children' as they are not real humans.


Kasrils wouldn't know the truth if it smacked him in the face. Repeat blatant misinformation often enough and fools will believe it. And the MSM always go with the pack. I wouldn't read the "not so bright" Star, just use it for lighting fires.


Kasrils is a character poisoned and eaten up with an intense and murderous hatred of Israel and all Israeli men, women and children...He is bigoted as any NeoNazi or KuKluxKlan man.


Guys, easy... Kasrils is for sure, an Israeli agent, masking his true identity under piles of outrageous bullshit.


Yeah, no surprises - what do you expect from the Star, at bottom they and the Argus are no better than the M&G. A complaint should be made to the Ombudsman. We can't just mumble under our breaths and let them get away with it, that's part of the problem with all this media anti-Semitism, Jews just taking all this lying down.

Somebody want to call the folk at the SAJBD asking them to publicly take the Star to task for their Jew-hate lies in this regard? Not holding my breath here...


The SAJBD? Asking them to be openly critical of anything? HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAAHAHAHAHAHAHA

I think their policies were made quite clear when the national director had to resign after criticizing Tony Leon


The SAJBD wrote an excellent article in response to RK. Think it may have been published in the Cape Argus today. Havent checked. Not feeling very well today...ugh...


It all go's back to the old dictum of if you repeat a lie often enough it becomes the truth.
Now when we first started haering the "Israelis are Nazis" slur we saw how absurd and macabre it was.
But as it was repeated again and again and again more and more people start to buy into it.

It's all got to do with preparing for the genocide of the Israeli people.
It won't be seen as the second holocaust of the Jews that it really is, but instead in fact it will be regarded as the killing of Nazi men, Nazi women and Nazi children.
Yes, kill a Jewish child in Israel, and according to this macabre Orwellian theatre, you are not a killing a Jewish child at all (even if her great grand parents survvied the holocaust), you are actaully killing a Nazi child.
Therefore in the name of the first holocaust, the second holocaust becomes kosher and even just, becuase the world has been convinced that the Jews in Israel are now Nazis and the Arab terrorists are persecuted Jews.
That is what the entire industry to demonize Israel is preparing for.
And quite frighteningly they are becoming more and more succesful.
Satan's own work is succeeding.


just as a matter of interest and a little off-topic, living in Israel, I have encountered so much anti-Semitism here in the year and a half I have been here, you wouldn't believe; from all the Eurotrash and British tourists, from so many self-loathing American Jews, and from Israeli Jews themselves, especially and predominantly where I am now living - in Tel Aviv. I don't mean legitimate criticism of Israel, I mean what Robert Wistrich calls the "irresponsible level of self-flagellation", I mean self-loathing. I would go as far as saying I have encountered as much self-loathing among Jews and others here as I have anti-semitism in SA from all South Africans, easily.

I am not exaggerating, Tel Aviv Jews are worse than any in the Diaspora, even the Americans. So really what is the point? Israel like every other nation is caught in the same rat-race lifestyle, but also is surrounded by enemies bent on annihilating it - the one solace, that one is part of the Jewish nation, in common cause and free of the usual anti-Jew gibberish that is daily bread to our enemies around the world, turns out to be a cruel farce. Israel is filled with Jews who give comfort and aid to their enemies through their own self-loathing and weakness, you really have no idea. I am so depressed and maddened by this, the Trickster Coyote laughs madly and poor old Theo Herzl spins in his grave.

And our children will have to pay the price.

If somebody here comments that there are millions of Jews in Israel (especially those outside the self-loathing belt of Tel Aviv) who aren't like that, I say so what?


So true whatyousay about those disgusting self-loathing American Jews- I also encountered them in Israel, I suppose if they vote for Obama, as most of them do, they certainly don't care about Israel's fate.


Steve, responding to Ronnie is not what I understand to be openly critical. To be openly critical, for example, would mean that the Board condemns SA government (and therefore ANC) actions when they are clearly inappropriate.
Or, for example, "publicly take the Star to task for their Jew-hate lies"


Our reign of terror, by the Israeli army

In shocking testimonies that reveal abductions, beatings and torture, Israeli soldiers confess the horror they have visited on Hebron

By Donald Macintyre in Jerusalem

The dark-haired 22-year-old in black T-shirt, blue jeans and red Crocs is understandably hesitant as he sits at a picnic table in the incongruous setting of a beauty spot somewhere in Israel. We know his name and if we used it he would face a criminal investigation and a probable prison sentence.

The birds are singing as he describes in detail some of what he did and saw others do as an enlisted soldier in Hebron. And they are certainly criminal: the incidents in which Palestinian vehicles are stopped for no good reason, the windows smashed and the occupants beaten up for talking back – for saying, for example, they are on the way to hospital; the theft of tobacco from a Palestinian shopkeeper who is then beaten "to a pulp" when he complains; the throwing of stun grenades through the windows of mosques as people prayed. And worse.

The young man left the army only at the end of last year, and his decision to speak is part of a concerted effort to expose the moral price paid by young Israeli conscripts in what is probably the most problematic posting there is in the occupied territories. Not least because Hebron is the only Palestinian city whose centre is directly controlled by the military, 24/7, to protect the notably hardline Jewish settlers there. He says firmly that he now regrets what repeatedly took place during his tour of duty.

But his frequent, if nervous, grins and giggles occasionally show just a hint of the bravado he might have displayed if boasting of his exploits to his mates in a bar. Repeatedly he turns to the older former soldier who has persuaded him to speak to us, and says as if seeking reassurance: "You know how it is in Hebron."

The older ex-soldier is Yehuda Shaul, who does indeed "know how it is in Hebron", having served in the city in a combat unit at the peak of the intifada, and is a founder of Shovrim Shtika, or Breaking the Silence, which will publish tomorrow the disturbing testimonies of 39 Israelis – including this young man – who served in the army in Hebron between 2005 and 2007. They cover a range of experiences, from anger and powerlessness in the face of often violent abuse of Arabs by hardline Jewish settlers, through petty harassment by soldiers, to soldiers beating up Palestinian residents without provocation, looting homes and shops, and opening fire on unarmed demonstrators.

The maltreatment of civilians under occupation is common to many armies in the world – including Britain's, from Northern Ireland to Iraq.

But, paradoxically, few if any countries apart from Israel have an NGO like Breaking the Silence, which seeks – through the experiences of the soldiers themselves – as its website puts it "to force Israeli society to address the reality which it created" in the occupied territories.

The Israeli public was given an unflattering glimpse of military life in Hebron this year when a young lieutenant in the Kfir Brigade called Yaakov Gigi was given a 15-month jail sentence for taking five soldiers with him to hijack a Palestinian taxi, conduct what the Israeli media called a "rampage" in which one of the soldiers shot and wounded a Palestinian civilian who just happened to be in the wrong place, and then tried to lie his way out of it.

In a confessional interview with the Israeli Channel Two investigative programme Uvda, Gigi, who had previously been in many ways a model soldier, talked of "losing the human condition" in Hebron. Asked what he meant, he replied: "To lose the human condition is to become an animal."

The Israeli military did not prosecute the soldier who had fired on the Palestinian, as opposed to Gigi. But the military insists "that the events that occurred within the Kfir Brigade are highly unusual".

But as the 22-year-old soldier, also in the Kfir Brigade, confirms in his testimony to Breaking the Silence, it seems that the event may not have been exceptional. Certainly, our interview tells us, he was "many times" in groups that commandeered taxis, seated the driver in the back, and told him to direct them to places "where they hate the Jews" in order to "make a balagan" – Hebrew for "big mess".

Then there is the inter- clan Palestinian fight: "We were told to go over there and find out what was happening. Our [platoon] commander was a bit screwed in the head. So anyway, we would locate houses, and he'd tell us: 'OK, anyone you see armed with stones or whatever, I don't care what – shoot.' Everyone would think it's the clan fight..." Did the company commander know? "No one knew. Platoon's private initiative, these actions."

Did you hit them? "Sure, not just them. Anyone who came close ... Particularly legs and arms. Some people also sustained abdominal hits ... I think at some point they realised it was soldiers, but they were not sure. Because they could not believe soldiers would do this, you know."

Or using a 10-year-old child to locate and punish a 15-year-old stone-thrower: "So we got hold of just some Palestinian kid nearby, we knew that he knew who it had been. Let's say we beat him a little, to put it mildly, until he told us. You know, the way it goes when your mind's already screwed up, and you have no more patience for Hebron and Arabs and Jews there.

"The kid was really scared, realising we were on to him. We had a commander with us who was a bit of a fanatic. We gave the boy over to this commander, and he really beat the shit out of him ... He showed him all kinds of holes in the ground along the way, asking him: 'Is it here you want to die? Or here?' The kid goes, 'No, no!'

"Anyway, the kid was stood up, and couldn't stay standing on his own two feet. He was already crying ... And the commander continues, 'Don't pretend' and kicks him some more. And then [name withheld], who always had a hard time with such things, went in, caught the squad commander and said, 'Don't touch him any more, that's it.' The commander goes, 'You've become a leftie, what?' And he answers, 'No, I just don't want to see such things.'

"We were right next to this, but did nothing. We were indifferent, you know. OK. Only after the fact you start thinking. Not right away. We were doing such things every day ... It had become a habit...

"And the parents saw it. The commander ordered [the mother], 'Don't get any closer.' He cocked his weapon, already had a bullet inside. She was frightened. He put his weapon literally inside the kid's mouth. 'Anyone gets close, I kill him. Don't bug me. I kill. I have no mercy.' So the father ... got hold of the mother and said, 'Calm down, let them be, so they'll leave him alone.'"

Not every soldier serving in Hebron becomes an "animal". Iftach Arbel, 23, from an upper-middle class, left-of-centre home in Herzylia, served in Hebron as a commander just before the withdrawal from Gaza, when he thinks the army wanted to show it could be tough with settlers, too. And many of the testimonies, including Mr Arbel's, describe how the settlers educate children as young as four to throw stones at Palestinians, attack their homes and even steal their possessions. To Mr Arbel, the Hebron settlers are "pure evil" and the only solution is "to remove the settlers".

He believes it would be possible even within these constraints to treat Palestinians better. He adds: "We did night activity. Choose a house at random, on the aerial photo, so as to practise combat routine and all, which is instructive for the soldiers, I mean, I'm all for it. But then at midnight you wake someone up and turn his whole house upside down with everyone sleeping on the mattresses and all."

But Mr Arbel says that most soldiers are some way between his own extreme and that of the most violent. From just two of his fellow testifiers, you can see what he means.

As one said: "We did all kinds of experiments to see who could do the best split in Abu Snena. We would put [Palestinians] against the wall, make like we were checking them, and ask them to spread their legs. Spread, spread, spread, it was a game to see who could do it best. Or we would check who can hold his breath for longest.

"Choke them. One guy would come, make like he was checking them, and suddenly start yelling like they said something and choke them ... Block their airways; you have to press the adams apple. It's not pleasant. Look at the watch as you're doing it, until he passes out. The one who takes longest to faint wins."

And theft as well as violence. "There's this car accessory shop there. Every time, soldiers would take a tape-disc player, other stuff. This guy, if you go ask him, will tell you plenty of things that soldiers did to him.

"A whole scroll-full ... They would raid his shop regularly. 'Listen, if you tell on us, we'll confiscate your whole store, we'll break everything.' You know, he was afraid to tell. He was already making deals, 'Listen guys, you're damaging me financially.' I personally never took a thing, but I'm telling you, people used to take speakers from him, whole sound systems.

"He'd go, 'Please, give me 500 shekels, I'm losing money here.' 'Listen, if you go on – we'll pick up your whole shop.' 'OK, OK, take it, but listen, don't take more than 10 systems a month.' Something like this.

"'I'm already going bankrupt.' He was so miserable. Guys in our unit used to sell these things back home, make deals with people. People are so stupid."

The military said that Israeli Defence Forces soldiers operate according to "a strict set of moral guidelines" and that their expected adherence to them only "increases wherever and whenever IDF soldiers come in contact with civilians". It added that "if evidence supporting the allegations is uncovered, steps are taken to hold those involved to the level of highest judicial severity". It also said: "The Military Advocate General has issued a number of indictments against soldiers due to allegations of criminal behaviour ... Soldiers found guilty were punished severely by the Military Court, in proportion to the committed offence." It had not by last night quantified such indictments.

In its introduction to the testimonies, Breaking the Silence says: "The soldiers' determination to fulfil their mission yields tragic results: the proper-normative becomes despicable, the inconceivable becomes routine ... [The] testimonies are to illustrate the manner in which they are swept into the brutal reality reigning on the ground, a reality whereby the lives of many thousands of Palestinian families are at the questionable mercy of youths. Hebron turns a focused, flagrant lens at the reality to which Israel's young representatives are constantly sent."

A force for justice

Breaking the Silence was formed four years ago by a group of ex-soldiers, most of whom had served in Israel Defence Forces combat units in Hebron. Many of the soldiers do reserve duty in the military each year. It has collected some 500 testimonies from former soldiers who served in the West Bank and Gaza. Its first public exposure was with an exhibition of photographs by soldiers serving in Hebron and the organisation also runs regular tours of Hebron for Israeli students and diplomats. It receives funding from groups as diverse as the Jewish philanthropic Moriah Fund, the New Israel Fund, the British embassy in Tel Aviv and the EU.

Published: The Independent, Saturday, 19 April 2008

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