Jenny Tonge’s Victory over the Lobby ~ by Ramzy Baroud

Jenny Tonge

By Ramzy Baroud | Palestine Chronicle | April 18, 2012

‘My Lords, I was in Gaza six weeks ago,’ began Baroness Tonge, when she spoke at the House of Lords in January 2009. ‘Now, as a result of the impotence of the international community, not just in Gaza, but…over 40 years of occupation of Palestine by Israel, those institutions that I visited are rubble and many of the children with whom I played are dead.’

Jenny Tonge, then a member of the UK’s Liberal Democrat party, was a dangerous British politician as far as Israel was concerned. She not only dared to use strong language while referencing Israeli actions in the occupied territories, she also demanded action from her government

For this she was subjected to the same, predictable verbal abuse by Israeli officials and media, by the pro-Israeli British lobby, and even by some of her peers. However, calling Tonge ‘anti-Semitic’ was never going to be convincing. The formidable woman has spent years of her life serving her community – as a doctor, MP and spokesperson for Health for Liberal Democrats in the House of Lords – and has amassed far too much credibility to be shaken by defamatory accusations.

Moreover, very few will agree that calling for “the immediate—and I mean immediate—establishment by the United Nations Security Council of an independent fact-finding commission to Palestine to investigate all breaches of international law” constitutes anti-Semitism in any way.

But for those who insist that Israel is above any criticism, the mere suggestion that Israel should be investigated for alleged war crimes is an unforgivable act. Any hint of criticism can easily be misrepresented to equal the questioning of the very existence of the state, and casually labeled as racism.

The Baroness is not easily intimidated, however. Speaking at Middlesex University on February 23, she stated that, “Israel is not going to be there forever in its present form,” a reference to the country’s current racially-based political identity as a ‘Jewish State,’ which leaves native Muslim and Christian Arabs vulnerable to institutional racism and discriminatory laws.

Many others have already warned from the increasingly anti-democratic nature of Israel, especially with the rise of religious and ultra-nationalist parties. Leading scholars, Noble Laureates, acclaimed anti-Apartheid figures and former US presidents have all made similar calls, targeting the skewed nature of the Israeli political establishment, which grants rights to people of Jewish lineage while denying basic civil rights to all others.

Tonge was not targeting any race, but rather the small, yet powerful cliques that have long infested both British and US politics in areas concerning Israeli and the Middle East. “One day, the American people are going to say to the Israel lobby in the USA: enough is enough,” she said. “Israel will lose support and then they will reap what they have sown” (The Guardian, Feb 9).

In stating the obvious, Tonge irked British politicians, including members of her own party, who speak of ‘peace in the Middle East’ while actively undermining any real efforts to achieve such peace. Ed Miliband, leader of the Labour Party, said there was “no place in politics for those who question the existence of Israel.” Tonge, in fact, had done no such thing. Nick Clegg, leader of the Liberal Democrats, stated, “I asked Baroness Tonge to withdraw her remarks and apologize for the offense she has caused. She has refused to do so and will now be leaving the party.”

Since his sudden rise to close to the top of British political hierarchy, Clegg has moved substantially from his original stance regarding Palestine and Israel. In his article in the Guardian on December 21, 2009, he had articulated a strong position against the Israeli blockade on Gaza, and asked: “And what has the British government and the international community done to lift the blockade? Next to nothing. Tough-sounding declarations are issued at regular intervals but little real pressure is applied. It is a scandal that the international community has sat on its hands in the face of this unfolding crisis.”

Once in the government, Clegg changed his position. Tonge, on the other hand, remained consistently audacious, regardless of position or perks. Her stance in 2012 mirrored other stances she has taken in the past. In 2006, she uttered what few before dared to even speak in private: “The pro-Israeli lobby has got its grips on the western world, its financial grips. I think they’ve probably got a grip on our party,” she said (BBC, Sep 21, 2006.) Then, as in now, her comments were manipulated by the media to imply something entirely different from what she had clearly intended. Her exit from the party was a testament to the will of this strong British woman, but also to the power of the very Israeli lobby she often criticized.

It is important to remember that Tonge’s battle is not a skirmish within the ranks of the political elites. Rather, it’s a war of narratives, where Israel and its ‘friends’ insist on silencing any meaningful debate on Palestine-Israel. The other side, encompassing Tonge and numerous others, is slowly encroaching on Israel’s well-guarded discourse, and making serious inroads.

A recent episode in the war of narratives involved Gunther Grass, German author of the widely acclaimed anti-Nazi novel, The Tin Drum. Grass has now done what many others, especially in Germany, never dared to do. He criticized Israel for its aggressive posturing towards Iran. Israeli officials responded by calling the man every bad word in the book of defamation.

The typical ‘storm’ created by Israeli responses has, however, not managed to enact a typical response this time. Nicholas Kulish wrote in the New York Times that judging by the ‘outpouring’ of comments by German politicians and media, “it would appear that the public had resoundingly rejected (Gunter’s) work…But even a quick dip into the comments left by readers on various Web sites reveals quite another reality” (April 13). According to Kulish, “Mr. Grass has struck a nerve with the broader public, articulating frustrations with Israel here in Germany that are frequently expressed in private but rarely in public.” He adds that “charge of anti-Semitism aimed at Israel’s critics is widely viewed as a blunt instrument that silences debate, and in the process prevents Mr. Grass from making a point…”

While Israel does occasionally succeed in silencing critics, the tried and true tactic of the past is becoming less effective. In the final analysis, neither Tonge nor Gunter have actually lost to the lobby. In the world of ideas, only the credibility of one’s views actually makes a difference. The rest is hasbara.

– Ramzy Baroud (www.ramzybaroud.net) is an internationally-syndicated columnist and the editor of PalestineChronicle.com. His latest book is My Father Was a Freedom Fighter: Gaza’s Untold Story (Pluto Press, London).

If you like this article, please consider making a contribution to the Palestine Chronicle.




ISRAEL’S WEB WAR DECLARATION: HASBARA GOES WWW!



About Hasbara


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Supported by… AIPAC



Related videos by Anthony Lawson – The Videos every (American) should watch

AIPAC 101 - The Video every American should watch - Video 1

AIPAC - The Voice of America – Part 1 The Orange and the Pea - Video 2

AIPAC - The Voice of America – Part 2 The Treasonous Dollar Drain - Video 3

AIPAC - Treason by Members of the United States Congress - Video 4





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And all those supporting it paying for this…



Last but not least….



Or listen to Jewish mankind with a real conscience



Don’t think it’s about “Arabs” or “Islam”… we are all Goyim!


What is hidden even more

These lists, do not display the avoidable mortality. A clear and statistical factual evidence, about the number of deaths due to indecent ruling by occupation forces. For even an occupier has obligations under International Laws, Geneva Convention and the Hague regulations, which it is neglecting. These circumstances, together with deliberate policies of the occupier to neglect and even deny every basic human right, severes avoidable mortality which is totally silenced by media or reporting organisations. While in the Holocaust, 1 on 6 Jewish people directly died of deliberate neglect, so if we believe the facts over 1 million due to avoidable mortality, neither should these same circumstances be ignores which are ongoing in Palestine. For this report displays a avoidable morality of at least 0,5 million Palestinians.

How many more dead corpses of Palestinians does the international community need to see in order to act? How many more cruelties and violations of Human Rights, Regulations and International Law will be needed to intervene so this ongoing warcrime is being stopped once and for all?


The Rockets from Gaza Excuse

The Facts
So you only read melodramatic stories about home made unguided firecrackers flying from Gaza, zionism magnifying the flares untill the average ignorant thinks we’re talking 12 meter high nuclear head detonation (chemical nuclear or toxic) loaded warhead carrrying long range missiles.

While in fact, the “TENS OF THOUSANDS ROCKETS” which are allegedly “launched” by Gaza are non detonating, non guided and seldom hit any target at all regarding the alleged number of “rockets” we can easily state it is more a matter of high unlikely a Gaza rocket hits anything at all even more unlikely the chances it will kill.

Total Deaths from Qassams and mortars within Israel as from 2001 according to the “Israel Project”: 21 in 10 years

So let’s behold, the tens of thousands rockets which allegedly were launched: They killed 21 people if internationals counted as well, including Palestinians 29. 29 death from 10′s of thousands of rockets in 10 years, and 29 too many too.

To retaliate these deaths Israel commits the following attacks (kindly notice, all related posts are covered by media, reports and international organisations:

The Counterfacts

Gaza Under Israeli Attacks – Timeline Military Operations on Gaza
For all attacks all over Palestine check the Category → Attacks
For all attacks and violation of Law and crimes against → Children
For all attacks commited by (Illegal Colonists) → Settler Violence
For all attacks on Gaza’s Fishermen at sea → Fishing Under Fire
For all attacks on Press to prevent u see Truth → Attack on Press
For all assassinations by Israel → Assassinations
For all kidnap attacks by Israel → Kidnapping & Abductions
For all unlawfull incursion attacks by Israel → Incursions
For all massacres by Israel → Massacres & Genocide

So you did read in worldwide newspapers and media about a home made flare or “flying” from Gaza towards the occupied desert?

But you never read about the DAILY attacks by army, airforce, navy, police, intelligence, undercover agents AND settlers which happen on land from the air and from and on the sea in Gaza as well as in the West Bank? The tens of thousands rockets from Gaza killed as said 29 people inside occupied territories in 10 years.

Aside 10′s of Thousands rockets did hit 29 people they only hit The Israeli Qassam Rocket counter and Israeli (influenced media which is 96% of worlds media)

Your media did not cover it:
Israel detonated the 1st bomb ever in the diaspora & introduced terrorism: Learn a/ Menachim Begin

Neither about the fight of Real Judaism against Zionism which older than Israel itself, read the
130 Year record of jewish opposition against zionism

Even Einstein warned for it. Real Smart Jewish people know and knew
Einstein’s Letter Warning Of Zionism/Facism In Israel

For the sceptics: It was published in the New York Times
Original scans from microfilm of NYT Dec 4, 1948

And
Einstein’s letter to the Stern terror gang when it solicitated him to raise fund in the US

But #US is keeping the facts from the people, serving Israel and silencing while The power of lies, deceptions and disinformation as Americans pay the price of collective stupidity which is funneled up by their gov’t. Silencing the facts the giv’t knows too well:
The Facts US is aware of and hiding for you

But Checkpoint Washington is like Bibi explains
Netanyahu: ‘America is a thing you can move very easily’


Now we behold the real cost of human lives which has 2 sides

  • Deaths due violent attack
  • Deathd due to passive aggression (so called avoidable mortality)



This year 2011, Israel killed 239 people with direct violence
Siince the year 2000, Israel killed 1472 children
This year only, Israel killed, in Gaza only: 19 children, wounded 200 by shelling | Report



Deaths at Checkpoints
You only hear of death or possible death at a checkpoint, when a pregnant American reporter get’s forced 3 times after eachother to go through the X-Ray at a checkpoint.
Only than, media makes a little noise about possible (!) danger for the foetus. 18.000 women a year develop complications due to this policies and 35 children have died since start of monitoring of the effects of obstruction or entrance to medical aid

Avoidable Death of Pregnant women & their Unborn at Israeli Checkpoints – incl video
71 Palestinian Women Forced to Labor at Checkpoints-Israelis Deny Women Access to Hospitals, Clinics



Obstruction to medical aid or infringement of aid cost many lives in Palestine:
B’tselem Report | Death due to infringement on humanright of medical care: 2000 -2011

(This list only displays the direct reported effects of death by policies or denial to healthcare, while te real avoidable mortality rate due to deliberate deprivation of basic needs is much higher.)

For a comparision: During the Holocaust 1 in 6 Jewish people died due to deliberate deprivation of Nazi policies, causing death of 1 million Jewish people. A warcrime. Remembered every year. And this is justified to remember people which are slain in the awful Nazi war

Aside from the number of deaths in Palestine, it is widely silenced that Israel not only in Palestine cause many deaths, but also in Egypt, Syria, Lebanon, Jordan and beyond.

From 1967-2005 0,5 Million Palestinians died due to all other factors causing avoidable mortality or so called excess death

If you have no idea about the effects of deprivation meet Baby Firas:
Baby Firas – video

Or read about the effects of cuts of electricity for example for patients in need of dialysis:
Since 2007, 67 patients in need of dialysis or other treatment unavailable in Gaza have died

While International Law states:

Geneva Convention

Articles 55 and 56 of the Fourth Geneva Convention clearly establish that Israel, as the occupying power, not only has a duty to ensure medical supplies reach hospitals in the OPT, but to ensure and maintain the services of the hospitals too. As High Contracting Parties to the Geneva Conventions, other states not only have a moral duty but also a legal obligation to ensure Israel abides by its commitments to the protected population of the OPT.

UN Convention of the Rights of the Child

As a States Party to the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child, Israel is obliged under Article 24 of the treaty to recognise the right of every child under its effective jurisdiction “to the enjoyment of the highest attainable standard of health and to facilities for the treatment of illness and rehabilitation of health. States Parties shall strive to ensure that no child is deprived of his or her right of access to such health care services”.

In deliberate deprivation for Israel is refusing to lend a permit for repairs, supplies or denies entry of fuel:
Murder by denying repairs or materials to arrange basic life sustaining needs

That is is deliberate targeted to Palestinians may be proven by the fact that Israel donates streetlights to African countries to prevent traffic deaths, but demolishes ‘Imneizils (by Spain funded) solar systems which also provide the hospital, schools and the whole village of basic electricity needs:
If Israel would be able to “turn off” the sun above #Palestine, It would” ~ in pictures

Israel floods dams deliberately in Gaza, or deprives Gaza of repair materials for the aquifier (which also not works without power by the way) Causing only 5% of the water is fit to drink.
A fact which is known by world authorities on WHO since 2006.
Water-borne diseases cause 26 %of Illnesses


But Israel has become exactly as those it feared and hated once themselves. Than it accused beginning of December 2011 Ireland for being the most hostile country in the EU, because it compared Israeli soldiers to Nazis. You make the comparision. Judge for yourself:
HaShoah versus Al Nakba – in pictures

Or worse, it even kills life before it is born and “shows off” zionism proudly, the trophy pictures Israel does not want you to see:
The New Abu Ghraib – Israel’s own “Trophy Pictures” – in pictures

Israel is laying an illegal siege on Gaza, and even has
Policies to near starvation which it tried to prevent from leaking out

Forcing people (like in many wars) to smuggle:
Since 2006 over 160 Palestinians have died in tunnels

We need not to discuss assassinations are deliberate caused deaths:
Assassinations

To create the “State of Israel” about 77 massacres were committed: Here’s a list:
All Israeli Massacres – in Palestine only

And the genocide still goes on every day without your media covering it:
Daily updated list of Massacred Palestinians

Silence about the
Oct- Nov 2011 massacre on Gaza

Media silences
The Aug 2011 in Gaza massacre and no government condemned it

Retaliation 4 something it NEVER DID
Israel hiding evidence

Only during Cast Lead war in Gaza, Israel kiled
Over 1500 of which over 352 children in just 22 days time from dec 2008-jan 2009
The Names of the 352 Children slained by Israel in 22 days

Israel having cruel policies when not kill, to invalidate, the Rabin Herecy since the First Intifada: The Breaking Bones policy:
Literally breaking the law (and bones) with their own hands – video

Deliberate extermination by neglect:
Slow death’ [is] the Israeli system for exterminating prisoners

More than 200 Palestinians died in Israeli prisons due to the illegal Israeli policies of medical negligence since Israel occupied the rest of Palestine in 1967.
Several Palestinians were shot and killed by the arresting soldiers and officers.

Since the beginning of the Occupation in 1967, over 750,000 Palestinians have been arrested by Israel. Almost 95% of them have been subjected to some form of torture or cruel, inhuman and degrading treatment.
Since 1967, over 105 documented torture techniques have been used by Israel. At least 66 Palestinians have been tortured to death.

Israel itself adopted by enactment in March 2011 a mine clearance law, but only valid as it seems for Israeli grounds, for Golan is still paved and remaing 1 million personell mines stay in the soil of Palestinian occupied teritories
Those mines costed only for example in Golan (by Israel occupied Syria) 16 deaths
Many more deaths Israel caused by the left behind in for example Lebanon

Unexploded ordinances, also are a common (!) danger throughout Palestine, where daily invasions of Israeli forces often result in explosives, ordinances and tank shells that are (deliberately) left behind.
It is often children who are the victims of these unexploded ordinances, as they are naturally curious and drawn to the strange objects left by the army.

Not to forget, the kind of weapons Israel uses: US funded White Phosphorus, GBU-39 Bunker Busters with 75kg depleted uranium each, DIME, toxic, and other chemical warfare like CS gas (which last killed the first protester of this year 2011 Jawaher Abu Rahma on Jan 1 2011)
Special Topic: Israel’s Weapons a Crime on Humanity
More footage of Israel’s arsenal of weaponry

As you can read in the previous post these weapons not only kill instantly but also have long term risk effects for health, can cause diseases and/or death in the end. (even in Egypt and Israel itsaelf)

Only(!) during the war 2008-2009, Gaza police have put the weight of weapons dropped on the Strip by Israel during the war two years ago at over 3000 tons.

Tahseen Saad, head of the police force’s explosives engineering unit, indicated that a lot of the weapons used were illegal under international law. Occupation forces used different types of bombs with the most significant ones weighing between 150 – 500 Kg. Most controversial weapons were/are used including white phosphorous bombs which are illegal to use in populated areas.

Furtheron Israel used an assortment of missiles, such as anti-tank guided missiles, against civilians and their vehicles. Israeli army used bombs that dispersed red smoke made up of explosives and tungsten. When the bomb is dropped it sprayed a liquid which creates fog and in less than a second it disappears and the bomb explodes.

Reminder that Israel also murders people in Gaza by remote control: Israel’s video game killing technology . These drones which fly 24/7 365 days a year over Gaza/West Bank as well for several purposes like espionage,
Remote killing technology & surveillance but also precise and remote “liquidation”

The effect of the weapons is not limited to killing. Weapons containing materials that are forbidden under international accords, such as phosphorous, tungsten and uranium, spread cancer in the targeted population, destroy nature and cause terrible burns and amputations. Some of the consequences, like foetal abnormalities, are not immediately apparent.

So next time you see Israel telling, they had another rocket “attack” remember it has the most advanced Iron Dome system which indeed intercepts missiles if there are any REAL ones.

Remember also. Gaza… does have no dome at all. No iron dome, and no dome of Human Rights. It is indiscriminately bombed by F16′s, surveilled and attacked by drones, shelled by tanks, shelled & bombed by navy ships, from coast or at sea, and invasions on the land occur almost daily.
All the above is just a fraction of aggression regarding to the presumptions about the so called waves of rockets from Gaza and to put this into a more realistic perspective.

This is by no means a complete overview and this list can be made exhausting if we go name all passive and direct aggression, oppression in any way imaginable which Israel or it’s settlers impose on Palestinians.


The Right to Self-Defense of Palestine

For who does still not understand the (need or concept of) resistance of Palestine recommended read:
The Eagle of Palestine

and
The Palestinian Right of Self-Defense against this disproportional power and agression of ” Israel”
Palestinian right to fight occupation not only moral, but legal as well ~ by @myaguarnieri

The average civilian in Palestine has no more of self defense than a stone he or she can throw.
24 Years ago Palestinians massively engaged in civil disobedience and we’re heavily suppressed, which happens even today. Even last friday a unarmed civilian protester Mustafa Tamimi was murdered by the Israeli army. There is still not even evidence he even had a stone.

Overview ▶ With surgical precision Israel shot Mustafa Tamimi & deliberately delayed aid. He died. – pictures & videos

And remember

The First Intifada | انتفاضة – in pictures
24 Years later Palestinians living under occupation for 64 years now, still only have a stone, and some flares while the daily disproportional violence and aggression of the occupier, the collective punishment and the daily oppression and exiling is influencing 11 Million Lives in Palestine but most still outside, unable to return to their home.


While International Law – Universal Declaration of Human Rights states:

UDHR Art 13(1)
“Everyone has the right 2 freedom of movement & residence within the borders of each state”

UDHR Art 13(2)
” Everyone has the right to leave any country, including his own, and to return to his country”

UDHR 17:(2)
“No one shall be arbitrarily deprived of his property.”

UDHR 20(1)
“Everyone has the right to freedom of peaceful assembly and association.”

UDHR 20(2)
“No one may be compelled to belong to an association.”

UDHR Art 9:
“No one shall be subjected to arbitrary arrest, detention or exile”

UDHR Art 5:
“No one shall be subjected to torture or to cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment or punishment.”

UDHR Art 3:
“Everyone has the right to life, liberty and security of person

UDHR 15:1
“Everyone has the right to a nationality”

All of the Human Rights above, are not valid in Palestine. Just because Israel unilateral decided Palestinians have no rights at all, of no kind at all. Even when this means they pretend to be a Jewish state, violating not even international law, regulations, but also every divine law.



Something to ponder about…
For who not sees or who’s eyes are still closes. IOA has become exactly and even worse than those, they feared and hated once themselves. Using the same atrocities, policies to oppress, ethnically cleanse and eradicate human beings. Creating a new Shoah (Holocaust) for the Palestinians in 1948 with Al Nakba, and sustaining it by hasbara and the world’s ignorance or at least those not using their own mind to reconsider the realistic facts. So Hasbara in 16 words explained:

“Make the lie big, make it simple, keep saying it, and eventually they will believe it…”
~ Joseph Goebbels

…will be updated of course with related news or relevant counter “cyber truth ammo”. Stay Human, stay safe and Free Palestine!

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Truth does not matter for “Israel”. Buttons Do. To mute.





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