Friday, July 29, 2005

Don`t invoke the 'Altalena'

"Don't invoke the 'Altalena'

Shmuel Katz, The Jerusalem Post Jul. 27, 2005


It's become the vogue among pundits to forecast that the nation is heading toward a civil war over disengagement and that the prime minister will have to face his own "Altalena."

They are by implication conjuring up the Altalena myth of a revolt that was never planned and never took place, a fiction woven by a great but unscrupulous politician at the cost of a score of innocent young lives and the loss of a valuable ship and an invaluable store of arms. It's time to set the record straight.

David Ben-Gurion bluffed his way through the whole meticulously organized episode in June 1948 against Menachem Begin and the Irgun Zvai Leumi. He was supported by a press largely hostile to Begin and the Irgun; thus the fiction held long enough to undermine the popularity of a courageous patriot and to bolster Ben-Gurion's campaign for the then forthcoming first parliamentary elections in the new state.

To the provisional government, Ben-Gurion explained blowing up the boat by the assertion that there had been no warning of its coming and no permission asked of the Israel defense authority (which was Ben-Gurion himself). He had heard of the expected arrival of a boat with arms, he said, only on the day of its arrival. Every word of this story was false.

Ben-Gurion and his staff had known about the Altalena and its purpose at least five weeks before it arrived on June 20, 1948. At midnight on May 15, Begin, leader of the Irgun and three members of its high command – Ya'acov Meridor, Haim Landau and myself – met with Yisrael Galili, the head of the Hagana and Ben-Gurion's deputy, who came with Levi Eshkol and David Cohen.

Begin informed Galili and his companions that the Irgun had several months earlier acquired an American WWII ship which would be bringing from France hundreds of volunteer soldiers and a substantial quantity of arms. We wanted to bring the ship prior to the Arab states' attack, but bureaucratic difficulties delayed the delivery of most of the arms. As soon as these were overcome, we explained, the ship would sail for Israel.

What is more, on June 15, while the ship was on its way, Begin met with Galili to reinforce the national authority's approval for the venture. The United Nations had declared a cease-fire – which disallowed the introduction of arms and men into Palestine. In fact this was applied only to Israel; supplies of arms to the Arabs never ceased – by Britain through Iraq. Galili raised no objection. He did however make one demand – that the boat should land not at Tel Aviv but at Kfar Vitkin near Netanya. Kfar Vitkin was not a convenient spot; the boat would have to anchor some 40 meters from the shore. The captain of the Altalena, Monroe Fein – a US naval lieutenant, veteran of the war in the Pacific – had intended bringing up the ship, a Tank Landing Vessel, square to a shore.

Galili, however, explained that aerial surveillance by the UN was less likely to cover a small place like Kfar Vitkin. (This proved to be wrong: a UN plane almost immediately found the boat.) What he did not mention was that Kfar Vitkin was important because it was a Labor Party village and certainly not friendly to the Irgun. Begin, however, not suspecting anything, accepted the condition. To him, what was important was that the provisional government was cooperating in the landing.

Begin raised the question of the apportionment of the arms. Jerusalem had not been included in the Jewish state as recommended in the UN partition scheme, so its defense against the Arab attack was being continued by the pre-state Hagana and the underground Irgun and Lehi organizations – coordinated under the overall command of the Hagana.

But the Irgun was particularly short of arms. As it was the Irgun that had negotiated for the arms to be dispatched on the Altalena – and that, before the state was declared – Begin wanted a portion to be set aside to make up the severe shortages of the Irgun in Jerusalem.

He also wanted to be able to present their personal arms to the Irgun members who were now enlisting in the IDF. Galili indicated that the request for Jerusalem would be considered favorably, and added that he would send men to help unload the arms. Thus, the order was given from Tel Aviv, and the ship sailed off – to Kfar Vitkin.

AT SOME point thereafter Galili withdrew his offer of men to help in the unloading, so a call was sent out to members of the Irgun to come and help.

With the arrival of the ship, the passengers, 940 of them – including more than 100 women – were taken off the ship and sent straight off to an aliya camp at Netanya, where they would be able to rest before being inducted into the army. Begin and perhaps a score of Irgun members were on the shore. Begin was surprised and disappointed to find that Galili was not there. He was surprised also to see a large number of soldiers filling the area. Then the unloading of the arms began – rifles still in their grease.

This then is the scene for the "revolt" which Ben-Gurion invented. The ship brought to a place where the population was known to be basically hostile; the "manpower" sent to sleep in Netanya; the arms all in grease in their boxes.

Soon after the unloading began, a soldier arrived with a note for Begin. In it was an order signed by the local divisional commander of the army to surrender the ship and its contents within 10 minutes! Begin was dumbfounded. This was impossible. There must be some mistake, he thought (as he told me the next day). He decided he must go to Tel Aviv to find Galili or somebody else to talk to. Nobody prevented him from leaving the shore for the ship.

The captain, Fein, who had volunteered because he wanted to help the Jewish people in its War of Independence, gave the order for full speed to Tel Aviv. He soon discovered that there were two Corvettes tailing him. They even fired a couple of shots across his bow. They remained in the vicinity when the Altalena went onto the rocks off the Tel Aviv shore.

Begin sent one of the boxes of rifles to the shore, which by then was also filled with soldiers. He evidently wanted to show the rifles – in their grease – to whichever representative of the government he would be meeting. The box was taken out of the motorboat and then an army officer refused to allow it to go back. The Altalena was thus cut off from the shore, as was Begin. On board ship was its crew and perhaps a score of Irgunists, all unarmed, who had accompanied Begin from Kfar Vitkin.

Against the ship and the handful of people aboard and the arms it carried in its hold beneath, there was now directed a fusillade of bullets. Several people were hit. By the end of the day 16 members of the Irgun were killed. Three soldiers were also killed by retaliatory shots from the crew who had been armed for the voyage from France. Fein called to shore by radio for a doctor. A doctor was promised but never came. Then came the bombardment from mortars that had been emplaced a little further up the coast at Kfar Yona. Fein, in desperation, ordered the raising of a white flag and the men on the deck waved white handkerchiefs – but the shooting did not stop, and Fein, who protested, was told on the radio that the officer in charge had not been able to inform "all the fronts."

The shelling continued, and the ship burst into flames. Fein ordered abandonment of the ship. All aboard jumped into the sea and swam for the shore. Lankin – the commander of the volunteers – and Fein, were the last to do so. Begin demurred, but Fein ordered him off. It was the swimmers who were now shot at by the soldiers on the shore.

YITZHAK RABIN himself, the head of a Palmach unit, who commanded the Altalena operation, described in his memoirs how it was the soldiers on the shore who spontaneously started the shooting at the swimmers when they heard that Begin was among them. He explained the soldiers' action by the deep hatred that existed in the Palmach toward the Irgun and the Lehi. Another eyewitness, Azriel Karlebach, editor of Maariv, the next day agonized over the horror in his newspaper.

Why did Ben-Gurion order the wanton insensate behavior in Kfar Vitkin and then at Tel Aviv? What was he trying to achieve? There was no quarrel about the arms. He could have compromised on the percentage or he could have simply seized them and argued afterwards. Why did he prevent his soldiers from taking part in unloading the arms, so important for the army? All the power was in his hands.

That night Begin, in a lengthy impassioned speech on the Irgun radio, accused Ben-Gurion of simply wanting to kill him. There was indeed no other reasonable explanation for the murderous attack on the Altalena. Among the Irgunists it was thought that the explosion, the shooting (even though none of it came from the Irgun) helped Ben-Gurion create an atmosphere that would support his silly story of a putsch.

YEARS LATER, on August 20, 1971 Galili admitted in Maariv: "We agreed to the boats coming to Kfar Vitkin... We made technical preparations... I reported to the prime minister and the minister of defense on all the stages, verbally and in writing, on meetings with the Irgun leaders including the midnight meeting."

Ben-Gurion, by then out of office, did not react to Galili's admission, nor did he react to questions put to him even by the Labor paper, Davar. This however was 1971 – four years after the Six Day War. Begin by then had been a cabinet minister under Levi Eshkol, and Israel had more pressing problems on its agenda.

I wanted to set the record straight because the memory of the Altalena is being manipulated for political purposes to facilitate the expulsion of the Jews from Gush Katif.

The writer, who co-founded the Herut Party with Menachem Begin and was a member of the first Knesset, is a biographer and essayist."

Here`s the link.

Wednesday, July 27, 2005

Steven Plaut: Lying about Deir Yassin


Lying about Deir Yassin
By Steven Plaut | April 11, 2005

This week is the anniversary of the events that took place in the Arab village of Deir Yassin in 1948. In recent years, Deir Yassin has been converted into a bludgeon by the Far Left, the Neonazi Right, and Israel-bashers in general.

Deir Yassin is the ultimate "Man Bites Dog" news story supposedly based on the inversion of players. It is recited endlessly by the very same people who have nothing to say against a century of countless massacres of Jewish civilians by Arabs. The church in St. John's Wood in London is just one of many examples of outfits "commemorating" the "victims" of Deir Yassin this week.

Deir Yassin was a not-at-all innocent Arab village sitting near the only road into Jerusalem in 1948. In the previous December, the UN had voted to partition what was left of Madatory Palestine into two states, one a Jewish state and the other an Arab state to be named Palestine, of approximately equal sizes. The Jews of Israel accepted the plan, while the Arab states and the Palestinian Arab leadership rejected it. Had they accepted it, a Palestinian state would have arisen peacefully in 1948.

In response to the UN resolution, Arabs launched attacks against Jews everywhere in the country and in particular placed the city of Jerusalem under siege. The Jewish population of Jerusalem was quite literally starving. The only road into the city passed through the area of Deir Yassin, and the Arab militiamen in the town were stopping all convoys from passing through.

Since Israel had yet to be formally proclaimed, the only Jews doing the fighting were members of three poorly-armed militias. The main one was the Hagana, commanded by David Ben Gurion and the socialist Zionist party. There were two smaller ones operating independently under the command of the dissident "revisionist Zionist" movement, the Etsel and the Lehi.

Poorly-trained irregulars of the two latter militias were ordered to attack Deir Yassin to relieve the siege. They did so in ferocious hand-to-hand fighting, in which some Deir Yassin villagers were killed. The Bash-Israel lobby has always maintained that the villagers were "massacred" in cold blood, despite a distinct lack of evidence.

Those who participated in the battle claim the villagers were killed when the Jewish militiamen fired into homes from which fire was directed at them. The village was successfully taken and the siege of Jerusalem was lifted. Large numbers of Jewish militiamen had been killed in the house-to-house battle for the village. Approximately 100 Arabs in the village died, a number that was later greatly inflated by anti-Jewish propagandists to 250.

Part of the problem was that the mainstream socialist Zionist parties themselves magnified the supposed misbehavior of the two opposition militias in order to discredit them in the coming political contest for control of the emerging Jewish state. This trend has been echoed in recent years, and Deir Yassin has become the "massacre of choice" for anti-Semites trying to prove the Jews are bloodthirsty barbarians. In part these have based their claims on a document by a Hagana officer, one Meir Peil, who was not actually present at the battle but surveyed the village AFTER the fighting was finished. Peil claimed he thought there had been looting and intentional killing of some villagers. The problem is that Peil is also a leftwing radical and not exactly a neutral source. Other less politicized sources tell a different tale. Even some Arab sources confirm that no massacre took place in Deir Yassin.

Meanwhile, a few years back the ZOA issued a new study, Deir Yassin History of a Lie, a 32-page analysis (with 156 footnotes) by ZOA National President Morton A. Klein. (For a free copy, please call (212) 481-1500.)

Among other things, the ZOA study shows that the original claim of 254 dead was not based on any actual body count. The number was invented by Mordechai Ra'anan, leader of the Jewish soldiers who fought in Deir Yassin. He later admitted that the figure was a deliberate exaggeration in order to undermine the morale of the Arab forces, which had launched a war against the Jews in Mandatory Palestine to prevent the establishment of Israel. Other eyewitnesses to the battle estimated that about 100 Arabs had died. Despite Ra'anan's admission, the figure 254 was circulated by Palestinian Arab leader Hussein Khalidi. His claims about Deir Yassin were the basis for an article in the New York Times claiming a massacre took place--an article that has been widely reprinted and cited as "proof" of the massacre throughout the past 57 years.

Meanwhile, there have been numerous exposes of the lies that have been invented surrounding the battle for Deir Yassin and these have largely discredited the Peil "eyewitness" report.

A massacre did take indeed take place, following the events in Deir Yassin, which had occurred on Friday morning April 9, 1948. On Monday morning, April 13, 1948, an Arab mob, chanting "Deir Yassin", massacred a bus convoy of Jewish doctors and nurses who were headed to Hadassah hospital on Mount Scopus in Jerusalem. Seventy-eight members of Hadassah's medical staff were murdered in cold blood. Only recently was it revealed that some of the Hadassah nurses had found refuge in the nearby compound of the British consul, only to be turned over to Arabs by the Brits, and the Arabs proceeded to slaughter them in "revenge" for what they thought had occurred at Deir Yassin.

Both sides used the symbol of "Remember Deir Yassin" in 1948 during the war. There were Jews who intimidated Arabs with the slogan and there were Arab commanders who rallied their populace with the same adage. Meanwhile, what has fanned the flames of Deir Yassin has been the United Nations decision to confine more than three million Palestinian Arabs to refugee camps, promising them the "right of return" to Arab villages that no longer exist.

In recent years a group of pro-Arab propagandists in the US have stared holding annual "memorials" for the "victims" of the "massacre" in Deir Yassin. The late Edward Said had been a member and the group includes such people as anti-Semite Norman Finkelstein, Saudi-financed ex-congressman Paul Findlay, and PLO propagandist Hanan Ashwari.

These are people who have never denounced Arab massacres of Jewish children, which were committed not by poorly trained irregulars in the heat of a crucial battle, but by Islamofascist terrorists awash in money and under the direct personal command of the PLO.

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Steven Plaut is a professor at the Graduate School of the Business Administration at the University of Haifa and is a columnist for the Jewish Press. A collection of his commentaries on the current events in Israel can be found on his "blog" at

Tuesday, July 26, 2005

"IDF: 10 Terrorist Attacks Daily"

"10:43 Jul 26, '05 / 19 Tammuz 5765

( Arab terrorists try to attack Israelis on the average about 10 times day, according to the head of the Southern Command, Dan Harel. He added that the IDF prevented eight attempts by terrorists to attack Gush Katif and northern Gaza communities in the past month.

The latest attack hit the Negev town of Sderot early Tuesday morning when a Kassam rocket hit a residential area, damaging cars and houses. Five people were treated for shock."

Saturday, July 16, 2005

Poll Shows Muslim Support for Violence

"By Patrick Goodenough International Editor
July 15, 2005

( - A new poll tracking Muslim opinions on suicide bombing, Osama bin Laden and attitudes towards Christians and Jews is being interpreted as good news, although it shows that substantial minorities in some Muslim countries still have highly controversial views.

"Most Muslim publics are expressing less support for terrorism than in the past," said the Pew Global Attitudes Project Thursday. "Confidence in Osama bin Laden has declined markedly in some countries, and fewer believe suicide bombings that target civilians are justified in the defense of Islam."

Some headlines reflected the upbeat assessment: "Muslims Shift from Violence," said the International Herald Tribune. "Survey Shows Support for Bin Laden Waning in Islamic Countries," stated the Los Angeles Times, while the Washington Post declared: "Poll Finds Drop in Muslim Support for Terrorism."

Although the focus was on shifts that have been recorded since 2002, the new figures standing on their own nonetheless call into question assertions that only tiny minorities of Muslims favor violence.

Support for suicide bombings and other acts of violence against civilian targets had "declined significantly," Pew reported.

But the new figures show that 57 of respondents in Jordan said such acts were justified "often/sometimes." Another 31 percent said "rarely" and only 11 percent said "never."

In Pakistan "only" one-in-four respondents support suicide bombings "often/sometimes," said Pew, down from 33 percent in 2002.

In Lebanon, too, the figure had dropped significantly, from 73 percent supporting suicide bombings "often/sometimes" in 2002. Nonetheless, 39 percent of respondents in the new poll still hold that view.

The "often/sometimes" group for the remaining three countries surveyed was also larger than 10 percent in each case (Indonesia, 15 percent; Turkey, 14 percent; and Morocco, 13 percent).

When it came to suicide bombings targeting the U.S. and its allies in Iraq, those believing them to be justifiable ranged from almost one-quarter (24 percent) in Turkey to more than one-in-two (56 percent) in Morocco.

Asked how much confidence they had in bin Laden doing "the right thing regarding world affairs," only 10 percent of respondents in Indonesia, 12 percent in Pakistan and 18 percent in Jordan responded "none." In Morocco the figure was 40, in Turkey 73 and in Lebanon 78.

The percentage of those who said they had "a lot/some" confidence in the al-Qaeda terrorist leader were: Jordan 60 percent, Pakistan 51, Indonesia 35, Morocco 26, Turkey 7 and Lebanon 2.

Another question gauged attitudes towards Christians and Jews.

Respondents with "unfavorable" views of Christians ranged from 38 percent in Indonesia to 63 percent in Turkey. (Lebanon, the standout with only seven percent unfavorable, has a large Christian population.)

Even more marked were those with unfavorable views of Jews - ranging from 60 percent in Turkey to 100 percent in Jordan (Pakistan 74, Indonesia 76, Morocco 88 and Lebanon 99.)

By contrast, a majority of respondents surveyed in eight Western countries -- the U.S., Britain, Canada, France, Germany, Spain, the Netherlands and Russia -- said they had favorable views of Muslims. Only in the ninth Western nation surveyed, Poland, did that figure dip below 50 percent.

At Thursday's State Department press briefing, spokesman Tom Casey faced questions on whether U.S. embassies abroad measure Muslim public opinion to see whether fundamentalist attacks "resonate favorably among ... the man on the street or the woman in the street."

In his response, Casey said he took issue with the premise of the question.

"I don't think it requires a lot of measurement to understand that the average person anywhere in the world does not support the killing of innocents, does not support the use of terrorism and certainly does not support the use of terrorism in the name of one of the great religions in the world," he said.

Pressed, Casey said embassies do monitor public opinion, adding: "But again, I would just contend that regardless of looking at any individual numbers that it's clear to anyone in the region that the average person, whether it's in Iraq or Afghanistan or Pakistan or any part of the Arab and Muslim world, absolutely opposes these kinds of tactics."

Here`s the link.

In this context also see my previous post:

Quotes from "Muslim doubts on extremism" by Brian Knowlton and "Support for Bin Laden, Violence Down Among Muslims, Poll Says" by Robin Wright

Poll: Americans Oppose Gaza Plan and Palestinian State (and there`s more)

"New York - A major new national poll has found that 63% of Americans oppose Israel’s Gaza Withdrawal Plan; 80% oppose US aid to Palestinians; 61% oppose dealing with even elected or appointed Hamas members; while 63% support Jerusalem remaining under Israeli sovereignty; and 58% support economic sanctions against Saudi Arabia.

By a margin of 2 to 1, Americans believe the Gaza Plan rewards terrorism, by a margin of 3 to 1, Americans believe a Palestinian State’s goal would be the destruction of Israel; by a margin of 2 ½ to 1, believe a Palestinian State would be a terrorist state; and by a margin of 10 to 1, do not believe Saudi Arabia is a reliable ally in the US war against radical Islamic terrorism.

The poll was commissioned by the Zionist Organization of America (ZOA), the oldest pro-Israel group in the US. It was carried out by McLaughlin & Associates, a major national polling company, on June 26-27, 2005. The poll questioned a scientific sample of 1,000 Americans from throughout the US.

The poll findings:

By 63% to 16%, Americans oppose “Israel’s unilateral withdrawal from a section of Gaza and Northern Samaria” and “forcing 10,000 Israeli Jews from their homes and businesses.”

By 50% to 28%, Americans believe that “this Gaza Plan sends a message that Arab terrorism is being rewarded.”

By 63% to 5%, Americans say that “Jerusalem should remain under Israeli sovereignty – not Palestinian sovereignty.”

By 80% to 12%, Americans oppose “the continuation of $350 million in US aid to Palestinian Arabs.”

By 58% to 21%, Americans believe “the goal of a Palestinian Arab State would be to destroy Israel – not to live in peace with it”.

By 53% to 21%, Americans believe “a Palestinian State would be a terrorist state – not a peaceful democracy.”

By 61% to 28%, Americans believe that “if Hamas members are elected or appointed to official positions in the Palestinian Arab government, US officials should not meet or negotiate with them.”

By 78% to 8%, Americans say that “Saudi Arabia is not a reliable or trustworthy ally in the war against radical Islamic terrorism.”

By 58% to 28%, Americans support “economic sanctions against Saudi Arabia until they stop supporting and funding terrorists and radical Islamic education that teaches hatred against the US and Israel.”"

Here`s the whole thing.

In this context see the following:

""Surviving "disengagement"-Israel, civil disobedience and the higher law""

"The Jewish right to live in western Palestine: The Irrelevancy of "Belligerent Occupation" and the 4th Geneva Convention"

"Water in Israel: The Dry Facts by Martin Sherman with comments by IceViking after"

"Ariel Center for Policy Research Paper No. 157 with comments by IceViking after"

"ZOA Report: Gaza: The Case Against Israeli Withdrawal-U.S. Joint Chiefs of Staff: Gaza is crucial to Israel's security"

"Importance of Judea and Samaria in the era of modern weaponry"

"Israel`s Strategic Value, Post 9/11 Terror War Scenario"

Concerning the Anti-Defamation League`s polls I will here quote the following Press Release from the Zionist Organization of America and after that link to another earlier press release from the Zionist Organization of America:

"July 11, 2005 Contact: (212-481-1500)

No Validity To Conclusion Of ADL Poll
Claiming Americans Support Gaza Plan,
Proclaim Professors Of Statistics And Math
From U. Of Penn, Hebrew U. & Temple U

New York - Abe Foxman, National Director of the Anti-Defamation League (ADL) released a new poll on Israel’s Gaza Withdrawal Plan claiming it shows that 71% of Americans support the Plan. Israel’s Gaza Withdrawal Plan will cede the Jewish portion of Gaza and a portion of North Samaria to the Palestinian Authority and will forcibly remove 10,000 Israeli Jewish men, women and children from their homes, businesses, schools and synagogues without any concessions from the Palestinian Arabs in return or any agreement of peace.

But two distinguished professors of statistics and one distinguished professor of mathematics unequivocally state that ADL’s “conclusion that most Americans support the Gaza Plan is not valid.” The mathematics professor added that it was clear to him that the poll question was written in a way that was “politically motivated” and that the “conclusion that most Americans support the Gaza Plan is untrue and certainly cannot be stated based on the ADL Poll.”

The professors who analyzed the results of the ADL poll include Professor Abba Krieger, Chairman of the Department of Statistics at the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania; Professor Moshe Pollak, Department of Statistics, Hebrew University; and Professor Louis Raymon, Department of Mathematics, Temple University. (Prof. Raymon is former Chairman of the Department of Mathematics, and former Associate Dean of the College of Arts and Sciences, where he teaches both mathematics and statistics).

The ADL Poll question was as follows:

Israel recently decided to unilaterally evacuate its communities in the Gaza Strip without reaching a formal peace agreement with the Palestinians. Which of the following statements are closer to your views:

1. Israel’s decision to withdraw from Gaza is capitulation to violence and terror. Israel is forced to leave because it couldn’t curb terror.

2. Israel’s decision to withdraw from Gaza is a bold step to advance the peace process.

Professors Krieger and Pollak, of U. of Penn and Hebrew University respectively, said, “We reviewed the question asked of the respondents and determined that the conclusion that most Americans are in favor of withdrawal is not valid, according to ADL’s survey questions and answers. At best the survey obfuscates the conclusion because the focus of the statements seems to be on Israel’s reason for withdrawal and not on the opinion of the respondent and because only 2 options for Israel’s decision to withdraw are indicated,” neither one asking if respondents support the Plan.

Professor Raymon of Temple University said: “The ADL poll only addresses Israel’s apparent motivation, but does not address at all the question of Americans actual support for the Gaza withdrawal to take place. The question ADL asked had nothing to do with whether the respondent was for or against the withdrawal. Seventy-one percent of the respondents could and did choose the #2 option in the ADL poll that ‘Israel’s decision to withdraw from Gaza is a bold step to advance the peace process,’ agreeing that this may be a ‘bold step’ that Israel apparently believes will ’advance the peace process’; yet the respondent does not necessarily have to support the actual withdrawal him/herself. By picking this #2 option, the respondent only has to agree that Israel believes this will advance the peace process – the respondent does not necessarily have to believe that it will, in reality, advance the peace process or that Israel should, in fact, withdraw from Gaza.” Raymon added, “It seems clear to me that the phrasing and construction of this survey question is politically motivated and the ADL conclusion that Americans support this Plan is unreliable, inaccurate and invalid.” Professor Raymon further added, “In contrast to the ADL poll, the McLaughlin & Associates poll, which showed by a margin of 63% - 16%, that Americans strongly opposed the Gaza Plan, asked a straightforward question of a representative sample of 1000 Americans (June 26-27, 2005) prefaced by objective facts necessary for an informed decision. The results would seem to be unquestionably accurate, valid and meaningful.”

ZOA President Morton A. Klein, who is himself a statistician, having worked for many years with two-time Nobel Laureate Dr. Linus Pauling at the Linus Pauling Institute of Science and Medicine, explained that, “In addition to the previous comments made by the professors, one must also understand that option #1 in the ADL poll was so extreme and untrue that few people (in fact, only12%), even those against the Gaza Withdrawal Plan could or would choose it. Even those opposing the Plan likely don’t believe option #1 that “Israel is forced to leave Gaza because it couldn’t curb terror.” If, in fact, not being able to curb terror is the reason Israel is leaving Gaza, it would also be leaving Tel Aviv, Gilo, Netanya, Kfar Saba, Sderot and Jerusalem where Palestinian Arab terror has been rampant. It is also important to note that Israel has done a relatively good job protecting the Jews of Gaza. After all, 80% of all Israelis killed by Palestinian Arab terror since September 2000 live within Israel’s ‘67 borders, only 20% of those killed live outside these borders in Gaza, Judea or Samaria.

“Another factor in more people choosing option #2 (71% did) over #1 is that negative phrases and images like “capitulation to violence and terror” and “forced to leave” and “couldn’t curb terror,” are all in #1; while #2 has positive phrases and images like “bold step” and “advance the peace process.” These are strong phrases that will make #2 a more comfortable choice than #1.

“But what is most troubling about this poll is that it doesn’t even ask the question at hand, whether Americans approve or disapprove of the Gaza Plan. To more clearly show why ADL’s poll does not answer the critical question of whether Americans support this Plan, consider the following fictitious poll question:

“A man who needs money for his impoverished family has been offered $1000 by some gamblers to play Russian Roulette. After some soul searching he decides to play the game.

1. Is he doing it because he is afraid of the gamblers? Most people would probably say no.

2. Is his decision a “bold” one to help the financial condition of his family? Most people would probably say yes.”

“Yet, even if most people chose option #2 and only a minority chose #1, one could not state that most Americans support this man’s decision to play Russian Roulette. You would need a third question that directly asks “Is it a wise decision for this man to play Russian Roulette and do you support him doing it?” Likely, most people would say no to this question. In any event, you need option #3 to get the answer to the major question of whether this man should play Russian Roulette or not.”

ZOA President Morton A. Klein respectfully requests of ADL, “In light of the rigorous analysis performed by three distinguished statistical and mathematical scientists of the ADL poll, showing that ADL’s conclusion that most Americans support Israel’s Gaza Withdrawal Plan is invalid, the ZOA calls on Abe Foxman and ADL to stop promoting and disseminating their poll’s results and immediately issue a public retraction of their erroneous conclusion.”"

Here`s the link.

And here`s the older Press Release.

Sunday, July 10, 2005

"Terror Up Significantly in June"

"02:50 Jul 10, '05 / 3 Tammuz 5765

( According to a report released by the Israeli Intelligence and Terrorism Information Center, June was the highest month of terror attacks since the Sharm el-Sheikh Summit in February.

The report documents 124 shooting attacks and 120 shelling attacks during the month, the highest in the five-month period since Prime Minister Ariel Sharon met in Sharm el-Sheikh with Palestinian Authority leader Abu Mazen. Four Israelis were killed as a result of the attacks.

Documenting the situation since the Sharm summit, which the government has classified as a period of relative calm, the report cites 800 terror attacks with Abu Mazen’s Fatah organization credited with no less than 45% and Hamas trailing with 27% followed by Islamic Jihad with 24%"

Friday, July 08, 2005

"The Biggest Lie in Israel"

"by Prof. Paul Eidelberg
Friday, July 8, 2005

Evelyn Gordon is one of the more candid journalists of The Jerusalem Post.
Back in April 16, 2002, she cited some of Israel’s most charming Arab Knesset Members: (1) Taleb a-Sana, who praised a suicide bomber and called for more of the same; (2) Abdul Malik Dahamshe, who calls Israeli Arabs convicted of murdering Jews “prisoners of conscience”; (3) Azmi Bishara, who praises Hizbullah as the model for Israeli Arab resistance against Israel; (4) Mohammad Barakei, who urged Israeli Arabs to participate in Palestinian violence against Israel.

Ms. Gordon then remarked: “if the statements by [these] Arab MKs indeed reflect the opinions of their voters, the inescapable conclusion is that the overwhelming majority of Israeli Arabs actively or tacitly support violence against Israeli Jews.”

More recently, Sammy Smooha of the University of Haifa Department of Sociology and Anthropology, reported, “Israeli Arabs totally reject the notion of a Zionist state.” (Jerusalem Post, June 21, 2005.) Only 13.8 percent agreed to Israel’s right to exist. Had the pollster been an Arab, that 13.8 percent would probably have plummeted close to zero—and why not?! Why should any Arab with a stitch of honor—and Arabs are notorious for their overweening pride—want to live under “infidels,” especially in a country like Israel?

After all, what country exhibits so little national pride as this so-called Jewish state? What country tolerates in its law-making assembly subversives like Taleb a-Sana, Abdul Malik Dahamshe, Azmi Bishara, and Mohammad Barakei?"

Here`s the whole thing.