John R. Houk
© December 10, 2010
Ari Bussel writes about the deceit of pro-Palestinian elements on American campuses. I have nothing against pro-Palestinian elements presenting their case; however I do have a problem when the Israeli perspective is restricted or non-existent. I am extremely pro-Israel and hence tend to get extremely upset when a Palestinian half-truth is told to demonize Israel. Arabs that call themselves Palestinians and their apologists consistently fail to tell how these particular Arabs are taught to hate Jews from the cradle to the grave. The failure lay in that almost nearly from Israel’s modern inception the Muslims of the Middle East have attempted to destroy Jews from their hereditary homeland via Islamic Supremacist violence.
The new Israel that became independent in 1948 won their freedom to exist on a fraction of their land that Jews have been ejected from by force for more than a millennia. Even after many Muslim-Arabs fled in 1948 at the behest of Muslim-Arab invaders to save them from what the invaders thought would be a bloody carnage decimating losing Jews, these Arabs expect the right to return to land voluntarily left from. The Arab version is that the Jews forced the Arabs to leave land by force. Although some Arabs experienced the wrath of independence minded Jews, the reality is this was the exception more than the rule. The reality is that wherever Jews came under the control Arab armies they suffered atrocities. The reality is that the land occupied by then Transjordan in 1948 resulted in the forced expulsion of Jews from their homes (some of them ancient as in the Jewish Quarter of the Jerusalem Old City that later became dubbed East Jerusalem) while Synagogues and revered Jewish burial sites were desecrated. You can tell the difference between Jewish and Muslim sense of history. In 1967 when Israel regained their land from occupying Jordan, the Israeli government then allowed the Islamic Supremacist Waqf to maintain its authority on the Temple Mount allowing Muslim Mosques (Al Aqsa and Dome of the Rock) to stand. If Israel had followed the example of Muslim-Arabs established in 1948, Jews could have desecrated the two Mosques on the most holy parcel of Land to all Jews worldwide.
I could go on and on about how Muslim-Arab apologists have managed to prevail about portraying themselves as the victims. Three thousand years of Jewish victimization including the present day is being failed to be presented. Ari Bussel elaborates on this.
Israelis, Haters of Israel
Arab Film Festival
By Ari Bussel
Sent: 12/9/2010 5:10 PM
A two-day Arab Film Festival was held recently at the School of Cinematic Arts at the University of Southern California. The event was part of a yearlong program of USC’s Arts and Humanities Initiative called Visions and Voices.
“Eyes on the Middle East” was focused on a very narrow area of interest: The Israeli Palestinian conflict. Dubbed, “complex and controversial” the “conflict” was depicted by “filmmakers on both sides, using cinematic media to express a variety of perspectives about the struggles and the quest for peace.”
More accurately, the sixteen hours of movie watching looked, with the exception of eleven minutes, at only one side: the Palestinian Narrative. During a “rebuttal” time, the true colors of the Palestinian narrative were shown, in their own words, from UNRA schools in Gaza. These, however, were cut short and were declared repeatedly to be “advocacy pieces” by Israel.
In short, Professor Jeremy Kagan, who did not try to disguise his own bias, has successfully exposed students and guests of one of USC’s premier schools to the most creative weapon in the Arab’s arsenal: Manipulating the world’s public opinion via the use of storytelling.
The Muslims have successfully engaged in deceiving the Western World. Deceit is permitted by their religion, even encouraged if it helps them attain their goals (of spreading Islam and reaching global dominance). It seems there was no one who excelled in it better, in recent history, than Arafat himself. He created the notion of a “Palestinian People,” of some “Nationhood” and craving for Jerusalem as its “eternal capital.” In short, he stole the Jewish-Zionist two thousand year history and rewrote it into his own narrative.
So successful was Arafat, that hardly even three decades later, the world itself stands saluting the idea of a Palestinian Statehood (in the boundaries of what was once known as Israel), with a Right of Return of millions of Palestinians that were kept in refugee camps throughout the Arab world, and with Jerusalem as their eternal capital.
For Professor Kagan, Palestine exists and is very real. Palestinians are hurting, and it is all because of the Israelis. The necessary outcome: Jews must return to their original homelands, Germany, Poland, the United States of America, and return Palestine to its original owners. To achieve this, to bring down the Goliath, cinema “can play a powerful role in increasing international awareness and understanding.”
The awareness is not of homicide bombings by Muslims, the steps taken by Israel to minimize the deaths of innocents when her enemies fire from within civilian population centers or the tedious, unending process Israel has undergone to ensure human rights equal for all and to maintain her democracy at a very high cost to her Jewish citizens.
The awareness stays away from brainwashing, hatemongering, glorifying terrorists and promising an afterlife rewarded with sexual pleasures to those who kill in the name of their god.
This “so-called” awareness dismisses anything that impressionable souls may find offensive and focuses instead on blood libels.
How was this conveyed during the festival?
Stories were shown in a continuum, taken out of context, without the proper background or timeline. Thus, we were exposed to Palestinian workers who are in Israel illegally, hiding during the night in the fields at a “nine star hotel,” being chased by the police. Interestingly, the construction site supervisors knowingly employed illegal workers.
The worker’s reasoning: There is no work back at home (in Ramallah), so they come to Israel.
Update: Since the movie, Arabs are no longer employed in construction. Foreign workers were brought from East Asian countries. They work hard and send much of their earnings to their families back at home.
Does that sound familiar to any American? Have we ever bothered to extend a hand to the thousands of homeless people in our streets, many who served our country, others who are mentally ill?
The next story was of two young men sent to execute a homicide mission in Tel Aviv. Their senders recruit others, but will not dedicate their own lives to reach that paradise full of virgins. There is a fence that needs to be crossed, separating “Palestine” and Israel, designed exactly to prevent such occurrences. As the movie shows, a fence can be very effective, but this one is torn open – allowing free passage.
As they cross, there is an Israeli waiting to take them to their destination. He and his girlfriend will be paid once the mission is complete – once murder and mayhem rule and innocent blood is spilled.
There is a human side to terrorism, a toll even, and the viewer becomes absorbed and sympathizes with the perpetrators, almost wanting to participate himself.
All the while in Israel, Jewish (Israeli) and Muslim (Arab) parents try to bring about peace by sending their children to a bi-lingual, bi-national school. The very premise of the school is faulted, for Arab Israelis are citizens who already possess equal rights in Israel.
At the school, children celebrate Hanukah and are taken to a mosque to pray. Worse of all, the teachers present completely opposing viewpoints: Israel’s independence day is celebrated by the Jews yet is a day of mourning for the Muslims – it is their “Catastrophe.”
Two life-changing moments in the movie, according to the filmmaker, were two friends, a Jew and a Muslim from the same class who go to the Jewish boy’s grandma’s house for lunch. There, over spaghetti and meatballs, the grandma, who is in shock due to a terrorist attack that happened earlier the day, asks very poignant questions of the Arab boy. Were the questions justified? Not to a boy that age, but they highlighted the real theater in which this experiment took place, where Palestinians will butcher the Jews just because they are Jews and in order to take over.
The other scene is two girls, best friends; a Jew and a Muslim from the same class. They go with the father of the Muslim girl to celebrate, and as they sit and eat, the Jewish girl, much older and wiser for her age, asks her friend’s father why is her friend never permitted to admit she is in love with a boy.
The father states that even when the daughter reaches the age of 25, if she decides to fall in love and dares to say anything, he himself will kill her and then go to the police station to confess.
This example of childhood innocence versus a backward society trying to force us back into the 7th Century should have been expunged from the movie, claim Arabs. Like any other reality that is unpleasant to western ears and eyes.
To highlight co-existence, there are wonderful examples of minorities living in Israel without promoting the right of such minorities to overtake the country. The country was founded as a Jewish state, in which minorities have full rights. Those who view the very founding of the nation as a catastrophe have a choice: to leave. To overcharge young impressionable minds of third graders with a conflict of one nation to destroy another nation is neither fair nor warranted.
Again, bring it close to home: Think about those aspiring to be Americans learning the language, celebrating our holidays and trying to become productive citizens. If they are actively engaged against the United States of America, their place is not here. [There are several recent examples of Americans aspiring to bring down the Government and establish Muslim Shaaria Law, including going and fighting against American forces in Iraq, Afghanistan and elsewhere.]
There was another story of a father and a son driving together. The father recognizes the reality in which he lives and submits to checks at roadblocks designed to prevent the free passage of terrorists en route to homicide bombings or carrying other terrorist acts. The son is influenced by his uncle’s “heroic” death (as a terrorist, Palestinian “Freedom Fighter”) and despises the father’s behavior.
The son wants to fight the brutal Zionist oppressors, to rid the country of them. He is tomorrow’s Shaid, martyr, ready for the struggle.
The filmmaker explained during a panel discussion the difference between him, a Palestinian, and the new generation. Interestingly, he is an Israeli-Arab from Northern Israel. But his observation is correct: The new generation is ready to fight to death until they destroy the Jews. It is a generation raised on hatred, in what they see on TV, hear on the radio, see and experience in hip hop videos and are brainwashed and trained in schools and summer camps.
It is a generation lost to hatred, a generation that will fight to murder, for the sake of rewards in the afterlife, for glorification after their deaths in classrooms and city squares, on stamps and in textbooks and stories.
The same filmmaker made another true observation – Palestinians are excellent storytellers, but their story has not been heard until recently. This very Film Festival is a testament to how effective story telling can be as a weapon, when the story is false yet it creates an illusion of authenticity and humanity.
The next full feature was damning to the Jews. It is a great movie about a sleazy politician who becomes Israel’s Minister of Defense. He and his wife move into a house his wife designed, bordering a lemon grove belonging to a widowed Palestinian woman whose family has been tending the grove for generations.
A decision is made to uproot the grove, due to security considerations vis-à-vis the safety of the Minister’s family’s life. Compensation is offered, which goes beyond what the law requires. The widowed owner, who depends on the lemon grove for her livelihood, decides to fight.
We witness a politician in all his rotten glory, from making opposing statements as may befit the situation, having a possible affair with his young aide, forcing his wife to submit to his career, and otherwise a story not much different from Desperate Housewives.
There is indeed a love affair between the widow and her lawyer, about half her age, and the story of a women fighting to save her lemons and the soul of the grove her father cultivated before her.
At the end the Israeli Supreme Court upholds the military court’s ruling, removing the requirement for any compensation but prohibiting uprooting the full grove, just trimming it down to nothing.
Here too there are several observations that are quite interesting and to which attention would not be normally paid: First, the Supreme Court hearing was before a panel of three women judges. In Israel, there is a woman on the Supreme Court (in fact, the Chief Justice is a woman) and there is also an Arab (non-Jew) as a Justice.
Also, although it is presented differently, only in Israel can anyone approach the Supreme Court, be the person an Israeli citizen or not, be heard and receive a fair trial. Moreover, unlike the USA, where a case may or may not be heard and the process is particularly lengthy, the Israeli Supreme Court hears cases constantly, one does not need to mortgage’s one very existence to be heard, and the Court has traditionally been supportive of action that would seem to be contrary to interests of the State.
Indeed, it is the very same court that has constantly upheld individual’s rights over those of the State, and much of the “Wall” has had to change due to its decisions under Aharon Barak, the previous Chief Justice.
The movie also highlights a closed, backward society in which a widow is threatened not to defile her dead husband’s reputation, although he has been dead for ten years—she must remain in solitude for the rest of her life.
There are themes, throughout the two day event, that are recurring: the notion of Paradise (and the confusion that murdering in the name of an All Merciful will bring one to a heaven full of virgins), lemon trees and oranges and the soul of the groves (replacing somewhat the olive trees, as no one seemingly is interested in peace any more), demolitions and taking over the houses and belongings of the Arabs, the notion of David, the victim, voiceless Palestinians against the Military Might of the Israeli Occupation Machine, WALLS, more WALLS, and the glorification of homicide bombings and generally breaking the law.
The next day started with a Palestinian whose grandfather was born in Jaffe either under Ottoman or British rule. She was born and raised in Brooklyn, and now she comes to Israel to first get her grandfather’s inheritance (bank account from the pre-1948 War to eliminate the Jewish State) and to claim his house back.
She stops at nothing, from robbing a bank (which happens to be Arab) that refuses to give her the money, disguising her lover-comrades to lying and threatening. Everything is permissible and no laws are to be observed as long as she thinks she it is right.
She ends up being deported back to the United States, but in the meantime succeeds in persuading herself and us that she was wronged, that Israelis must leave this country and return everything to the rightful owners. To what is it similar? To coming to New York and requiring that all the high rises, everything the eye can see, be left there and the residents leave, disappear. That Manhattan be returned to the Indians to whom they paid a mere $24.
The movie is full of overlaid juxtaposition of images of demolitions and Jewish immigrants and checkpoints and walls and separation, making us constantly aware the Jewish State was built over the remains of someone else’s country. That Israelis are interlopers without rights or justification for their existence.
Interesting, of course, are the scenes taken out of context, like construction sites that associate destruction rather than building and growth. This, indeed, is the difference between the Jews who made a desert flourish, dried the swamps, fought malaria and changed something barren into a living paradise and the Palestinians who want to ruin it all, turn it to ashes and bloodshed, into a large graveyard.
Most touching was the movie that compared the sorrow and grief by Israeli mothers whose sons and daughters were murdered in homicide bombings and other terror attacks with the Palestinian mothers mourning their sons and daughters, the Shaids, martyrs.
Something was missing however, like how the Palestinian children were killed in an explosion (a work accident while constructing rockets or booby trapping a residential area?) or by Israeli Settlers SHOOTING TO MURDER? The only instances known are those of Palestinians shooting dozens of bullets into passing cars or sharp shooters doing the same to murder Jews simply because they are Jews.
Alas, I am told, the reasons make no difference. The story is about mothers grieving for their lost offspring. And this is exactly the point: There is NO MORAL EQUIVALENCY BETWEEN THE VICTIMS AND THE PERPETRATORS. Israelis value life more than anything— theirs or their enemies. The Muslims place no value on anyone’s lives, not theirs and definitely not their enemies.
It is a culture of death vs. the sanctity of life, and the director has committed a great sin against humanity by comparing the grief and equating it.
These subtleties are so refined, the message so intertwined, that the Arab Film Festival managed to do a purely amazing job at relating a story, of a Palestinian people who are all good, who crave for nothing more than what is theirs, and who will find the courage from within to fight the evil empire to achieve justice.
What is wrong with this picture? The fact it is the height of deceit?
For me, the most amazing observations were the following two:
First, most of the movies were filmed in Israel, by Israelis and with the support and financing of the Israeli Government. One filmmaker explained it is the strength of Israeli society that allows itself to self-criticize. I see it as a great weakness in a society that allows self-hate to take over and refusing to see the harm in perpetrating lies.
Second, there was no presence, other than one individual who usually fights alone, like Don Quixote. After the Turkish Terrorist Flotilla, he managed to videotape a sixteen-year old courageous stance against a mob of Muslims, generating 800,000 hits and raising the morale of the Jewish People all over the world.
During the weekend festival, he managed to bring the short film, dubbed by the organizers “advocacy” and “propaganda,” and succeeded in having a few minutes of the film shown. That tilted the hands of justice from a total lie to a small semblance of balance.
Noticeably absent were representatives of Israel. The State of Israel vis-à-vis her local representatives, has focused on filmmaking and bringing filmmakers to Israel. Here, some of her best were showcased, all in a light that disgraced her very being.
Why were the Israeli representatives, both Government diplomats and others, not here?
For those who attended the Arab Film Festival and managed to get a glass-full of lessons in Palestinian suffering, as seen by Israeli eyes, created and crafted by Israelis and financed by their own government, the conclusion must have been simple: ISRAEL IS AT FAULT AND SHE RECOGNIZES IT.
I beg to differ: Israelis who hate Israel are at work while Israel stands idle and does nothing. This must change, if Israel is to survive the war to destroy her. Her enemies from within and without are winning battles day after day and soon the Jewish people will awaken, too late, to their own demise.
Muslim Apologist Lies on American Campuses
John R. Houk
© December 10, 2010
Israelis, Haters of Israel
The series “Postcards from America—Postcards from Israel” by Ari Bussel and Norma Zager is a compilation of articles capturing the essence of life in America and Israel during the first two decades of the 21st Century.
The writers invite readers to view and experience an Israel and her politics through their eyes, Israel visitors rarely discover.
This point—and often—counter-point presentation is sprinkled with humor and sadness and attempts to tackle serious and relevant issues of the day. The series began in 2008, appears both in print in the USA and on numerous websites and is followed regularly by readership from around the world.
© “Postcards from America — Postcards from Israel,” December, 2010
First Published November 21, 2010