This is a guest post by AKUS
The Guardian has taken quite a beating in its latest attempt to support the Hamas terrorists with its article Hamas is not al-Qaida, published on its ‘Comment is Free’ site.
In the language of American political-speak, they managed to demonstrate how completely they have lost their “base” – those who used to regard the Guardian, as I once did on my visits to the UK, as the paper to read for anyone who believed that there was something noble in the idea of caring for the weak and defenseless in society, and something wrong with fascist, xenophobic, misogynistic religious extremists.
A howl of disapproving comments descended on this article. Even CiF’s usual attempts to deny disapproval of Islamic extremism by ruthless deletion of comments not hewing to the Guardian line could not stand up to the dozens of negative responses, and the hundreds if not thousands of disapproving “recommends” for comments critical of Hamas itself, the article, its author, and the Guardian. The negative comments ran the gamut of those opposing Islamic fundamentalism to those who might not even usually support Israel, but are able to see evil and recognize hypocrisy and spin when it stares at them off the website so blatantly:
whatthethundersaid’s comment 21 Sep 09, 2:52pm
The two are radically different – the position of the democratically elected Hamas is about land, not religion, creed or race
They’re Islamic fundamentalists for Chrissake. Who are you trying to kid?
climatecommunion’s comment 21 Sep 09, 2:52pm
It is unfortunate that Palestinians chose Hamas and I feel sorry for Palestinians. But after 9/11, I saw footage of Palestinians celebrating in the streets, footage which I believed to be authentic. This was when my feelings of support for Palestinians dried up. I feel closer to Israel and refuse to believe that any group that outwardly calls for their annihilation should ever be supported. They arent alQaeda but as long as they praise them I have no problem actively opposing them.
Of course, there are always the usual few who will accept any article provided it meets the criteria of the looney left – an anti-Israeli, anti-Western bias, praise for extremism, terrorism dressed up as “resistance”, a misogynistic and xenophobic religious group to be accepted as equivalent to Western liberalism under the guise of “multiculturalism”. Note the pandering use of Altikriti’s first name:
berchmans’s comment 21 Sep 09, 2:56pm (about 14 hours ago)
Congratulations to you for this sober and carefully written article . Congratulations to the Guardian for commissioning it knowing it would be controversial, This is why some of us have stood by this paper through thick and thin ….even when it was very very thin! 🙂
This time, the Guardian could not even follow its usual policy of deleting references to the Hamas Charter and its references to portions of the Koran calling for the killing of Jews as it would have had to delete even more comments than it actually did, leaving little at all on the thread.
As for the Altikriti’s article, it is one of the most blatant examples of the “big lie” to be published I can ever recall reading in a paper which passes itself off as a major daily. As the string of fiercely negative comments by readers indicate (at least those comments that remain – a rough estimate would put deleted comments at between 30% and 50%), there is hardly a word of truth in it.
Ken Livingstone, well-known for his fierce antagonism to the State of Israel, interviewed Khaled Mishaal, an arch-terrorist, perhaps second only to Osama bin laden, on “the New Statesmen”.
The interview, bad enough in itself for the lies it includes, seems to have passed almost unremarked, and was presumably therefore taken up by the Guardian via this puff piece by Anas Altikriti. Altikriti, according to the bio obligingly provided by the Guardian, has been a “spokesman and then President of the Muslim Association of Britain (MAB)” who “[i]n 2004.. joined George Galloway’s Respect party” – well known for its fierce opposition to Israel.
Despite his established bias and agenda, Altikriti does not hesitate to accuse others of the same, or, in his view, and presumably that of the Guardian, since they published the piece, worse:
Meshal’s interview was denounced by Foreign Office minister Ivan Lewis on grounds that would equally exclude the government from talking to Israel were it not for the double standards applied to Palestine and the Middle East. Indeed, the very fact that Ivan Lewis should be made a minister with responsibility for the Middle East, given his clear bias as a former deputy leader of the Labour Friends of Israel, is a sad indication of how little interest it displays in convincing people of any kind of fairness in its approach to this part of the world.
Altikriti’s article attempts to put “space” between the Iranian-funded Hamas and the Iranian funded Taliban, both groups recognized by every civilized country as banned terrorist organizations.
The first paragraph says it all, perhaps not in the way Altikriti intended:
The New Statesman’s interview with Khaled Meshal, the Hamas leader, was one of the most significant interviews with the leading figure in a movement that has been demonised and excommunicated by most of the western world and its media.
Its significance is the fact that the New Statesman chose to allow an arch-terrorist to vent his views in a major Western paper, even though this fount of suicide bombings, kidnappings, knee-cappings, murder by throwing opponents of buildings, fiercely determined to install a Taliban-like Islamic theocracy on the helpless backs of those it rules at the point of a gun is rightly “demonised and excommunicated” by decent people around the world.
Perhaps the most fundamental lie in Altikriti’s article is the following:
Arguably, the most important assertion made in the interview, conducted by Ken Livingstone, is that in which Meshal clearly stated that the Palestinian struggle was anything but a conflict between Muslims and the Jewish people.
As has been shown repeatedly, the Hamas Covenant 1988, which has never been repudiated and, on the contrary, is repeatedly referenced in speeches by it leaders, specifically refers to the need to kill Jews wherever they may be found. Hamas, like its sister organization Hezbollah, has issued threats to the effect that it will try to kill Jews everywhere, not just in Israel. The Charter even invokes a second Holocaust in its first paragraph
“…..And if they who have received the scriptures had believed, it had surely been the better for them: there are believers among them, but the greater part of them are transgressors. …. They are smitten with vileness wheresoever they are found…Israel will exist and will continue to exist until Islam will obliterate it, just as it obliterated others before it” (The Martyr, Imam Hassan al-Banna, of blessed memory).”
It continues with references to the Jews, not the Israelis, not the land, or any of the other spin-terms that Meshaal and Altikriti pretend are at issue:
“Our struggle against the Jews is very great and very serious. It needs all sincere efforts” [empahsis added]
Altikriti follows Livingstone’s line in trying to show that Hamas is about a struggle for land, not religion:
He [Meshaal] insisted that the Palestinians were fighting against the occupier who had dispossessed them of their homes and lands, regardless of religion, creed or race. He also went on to confirm that the concept of coexistence was largely present in the Palestinian psyche, and that genocide, as suffered by Jews in Europe (and which he described as “horrible and criminal”) was alien not only to the Palestinians but to the inhabitants of the region as a whole.
Unfortunately, these pleasant themes, dressed up for gullible Western ears, do not jibe with Hamas’ Charter, which makes it clear, as if its actions against Christians in Gaza and attacks against Jews have demonstrated, that it is anything but accepting of others “regardless of religion, creed or race”:
The Islamic Resistance Movement: The Movement’s programme is Islam.
Article Two demonstrates Hamas’ allegiance to its elder sibling, the murderous Moslem Brotherhood (responsible for, among others, the assassination of Sadat because he made peace with Israel) and its intention, demonstrated daily in Gaza, to enforce the strictest interpretations of Islamic theology and law on any society it controls:
The Islamic Resistance Movement is one of the wings of Moslem Brotherhood in Palestine. Moslem Brotherhood Movement is a universal organization which constitutes the largest Islamic movement in modern times. It is characterised by its deep understanding, accurate comprehension and its complete embrace of all Islamic concepts of all aspects of life, culture, creed, politics, economics, education, society, justice and judgment, the spreading of Islam, education, art, information, science of the occult and conversion to Islam.
Altikriti’s claims that Meshaal said “the concept of coexistence was largely present in the Palestinian psyche.” In fact, Altikriti puts words into Meshaal’s mouth – if you read the Livingstone article, you will not find the word “coexistence” anywhere in the article. Lest there be any doubt about who is “in” and who is “out”, Article Three makes it clear that only Moslems may apply, giving the lie to Altikriti’s claim
The basic structure of the Islamic Resistance Movement consists of Moslems who have given their allegiance to Allah whom they truly worship
One can go on indefinitely, but Livingstone, Meshaal, and Altikriti overlook the most flagrant article of the Charter that clearly is based on, and intended to promulgate, hatred of Jews, using a text from the Koran.
According to Altikriti:
“Meshal was sending a clear message of assurance that the Palestinian struggle was political rather than religious and about real political grievances and not against the Jewish people per se.”
Unfortunately, this message, so pleasant to Western ears, is totally contradicted by the real message contained in the Charter:
….The Prophet, Allah bless him and grant him salvation, has said:
“The Day of Judgement will not come about until Moslems fight the Jews (killing the Jews), when the Jew will hide behind stones and trees. The stones and trees will say O Moslems, O Abdulla, there is a Jew behind me, come and kill him. Only the Gharkad tree, (evidently a certain kind of tree) would not do that because it is one of the trees of the Jews.” (related by al-Bukhari and Moslem).
Finally, as a demonstration of how far out of step with sensible opinion this article is, Altikriti includes the following paragraph:
The British government led the way in proscribing Hamas when the Islamic movement won the majority of seats in the Palestinian parliament in January 2006. More recently it is reported that the British government has been heavily involved in training and supporting the security forces of the Palestinian Authority in the West Bank, which have been accused of imprisoning, torturing and physically abusing members of Hamas and other political factions. While finding time to condemn an interview in a weekly magazine, neither Ivan Lewis nor the British government as a whole has accepted the finding of the authoritative UN report on Gaza authored by a committee led by a South African judge well known for his support for Israel, which condemned Israel for war crimes and possibly even crimes against humanity in Gaza.
Of course the British government proscribes this vile organization – it is the least it can do, and it is aligned with every Western country. We also see the now recurring complaint on the Guardian’s website against the empowerment of the Palestinian Authority as it struggles to prevent Hamas turning the West bank into another Gaza. Finally, Britain’s lack of support for the Goldstone report is completely in line with the lack of support among other Western countries, as they realize that it is nothing more than a pre-ordained, one-sided swipe at Israel, despite a mention of Hamas’ rockets which precipitated Cast Lead, and that supporting Goldstone would lead to a total inability to conduct military action against groups like Hamas, which are using asymmetrical warfare to cause civilian casualties among their own people for blatantly propaganda purposes.
The Guard is out of step with the world. There may be times when marching to the beat of a different drum is a worthy stance, but when the drummers have formed a band that promotes – worships, in fact- suicide bombings, cruelty to women, wholesale murder of Jews and Christians, has actually passed laws supporting crucifixion, and on and on, it is more than time to find a new conductor.
Perhaps the response to Altikriti’s article and the realization of how far they have wandered from their traditional left–wing base may finally “jog” the conscience of those in charge at Manchester Square to find a new beat and return to a realistic, not fantastic, view of the world.