The plague of jellyfish which recently blighted Israel’s shores and beaches seems to have finally moved along and left Israelis to enjoy the rest of the summer in peace – except, that is, for the swarms of ‘humanitarian aid’ flotillas which have also become a regular feature in our coastal waters.
The man behind the recent Lebanese flotilla (who also co-financed the ‘Freedom Flotilla’) – called the Maryam and the Naji Al Ali – is one Yasser Kashlak. A Syrian businessman of Palestinian descent, Kashlak is head of the Free Palestine Organisation, and maintains close ties to the Syrian regime, Iran and Hizbollah. He even has a department named after him within the Palestinian Association for Human Rights the mandate of which is ‘to document violations of Israeli settlers’. (Note that this link appears on the website of the UN Office for the Co-ordination of Humanitarian Affairs.)
So how does Yasser Kashlak describe the humanitarian mission of his flotilla? Speaking on the Nazareth based Arabic language radio station ‘A Shams’, he defined Israelis as the ‘thieving enemy’. Whilst appearing on Hizbollah’s ‘Al Manar’ television station he described Jews as ‘Europe’s refuse’ and said that he was optimistic that one day the flotilla ships would take that ‘refuse’ “that came to my homeland back to their homelands”, also depicting Israel as “a rabid dog sent to the region to frighten Arabs”. Kashlak’s message to Israelis was as follows:
“Get on the ships we are sending you and go back to your lands. Don’t let the moderate Arab leaders delude you, [you] cannot make peace with us. Our children will return to Palestine, you have no reason for coexistence. Even if our leaders will sign a peace agreement, we will not sign.”
Hmm; message received loud and clear, but it appears that this ‘humanitarian’ will not be content even if every last Israeli complies with his wishes and abandons the area: he also intends to pursue Israeli Jews to “the ends of the earth”.
“Gilad Schalit should go back to Paris and those murderers go back to Poland, and after that we will chase them until the ends of the earth to bring them to justice for their acts of slaughter from Deir Yassin until today.”
Taking into account Kashlak’s close ties to Hizbollah, it is hardly surprising that he promotes such an uncompromising attitude, the latter having made its intentions perfectly clear since 1985.
“Our primary assumption in our fight against Israel states that the Zionist entity is aggressive from its inception, and built on lands wrested from their owners, at the expense of the rights of the Muslim people. Therefore our struggle will end only when this entity is obliterated. We recognize no treaty with it, no cease-fire, and no peace agreements, whether separate or consolidated.”
“We vigorously condemn all plans for negotiation with Israel, and regard all negotiators as enemies, for the reason that such negotiation is nothing but the recognition of the legitimacy of the Zionist occupation of Palestine. Therefore we oppose and reject the Camp David Agreements, the proposals of King Fahd, the Fez and Reagan plan, Brezhnev’s and the French-Egyptian proposals, and all other programs that include the recognition (even the implied recognition) of the Zionist entity.”
Of course there are still those (not least in the British Parliament) who advocate taking tea and having a nice chat with the ‘moderates’ within Hizbollah just as there are still those who continue to delude themselves as to the true nature of these seemingly never-ending ‘aid’ flotillas. Not only is the very concept of a link between ‘humanitarianism’ and their organizers plainly ridiculous, but this willful blindness also prevents them from understanding the motives behind the flotillas within the framework of regional power struggles.
Just as the Guardian seemed to have a bit of a problem with the outcome of the Helen Thomas affair – in which the now retired journalist said that “the Jews should get the hell out of Palestine” and “go back to Germany and Poland”, with Michael Tomasky even insinuating, darkly, on the pages of CiF, that ‘Jewish power’ was the real reason why Thomas was treated so unfairly.
“but I think we all know why the double-standard exists. One side has political power and cultural influence in the US and the other doesn’t.”
We can reasonably assume that these statements made by Kashlek – with their disgusting similarity to those made by Thomas – will also be either ignored or at best given the infamous Guardian ‘contextualisation treatment’.
Whilst it may not be the case that the Guardian has never met an anti-Semite it didn’t like, it can always make the effort to find a cuddly side to any bigot with racist opinions about Jewish self-determination in the Middle East or genocide-aspiring member of the flavour of the month ‘resistance’ or dictatorship.
We can be certain that The Guardian certainly won’t be telling its readers that these “aid” ships descending on Gaza are actually weapons in the continued campaign to bring about what in another (more sane) world might be defined as a blueprint for ethnic cleansing.