Pro-Israel parliamentary group in Europe says Israelis suffered ‘worst’ of Gaza conflict

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A good government group in Europe has put out a report exposing p.r. and lobbying efforts on behalf of repressive regimes.

A report released today by research and campaign group Corporate Europe Observatory (CEO) sheds light on how dictators and repressive regimes are paying European PR firms and lobbyists to push their agenda and mask their dire human rights records [titled] “Spin doctors to the autocrats: how European PR firms whitewash repressive regimes.”

Among the problems swept under the rug: torturing dissidents, smearing critics, disappearing opponents, slave labor, “whitewashing Nigerian President Goodluck Jonathan’s… catastrophic handling of Boko Haram ahead of next month’s elections,” and Presidential candidate for Kenya Uhuru Kenyatta hiring a PR firm to discredit accusations by the International Criminal Court of crimes against humanity. The list of repressive regimes includes Russia, Rwanda, Azerbaijan, Uzbekistan, Nigeria, Georgia, Ukraine, United Arab Emirates, Code d’Ivoire, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Bahrian, Ethiopia, and Israel.

Israel’s PR goals are (p. 43 in the PDF): “redefining ‘occupied’ territories, fighting the boycott.” Its friends are seeking to rebrand the country as a haven of technology not a site of conflict and colonization. We’ve seen that in the U.S. too, of course.

The chief focus of the report is the European Friends of Israel, which has as members 1000 friendly parliamentarians across Europe and calls itself the largest parliamentary group of its kind. EFI was launched with funding from the Israeli arms industry, according to the new report. EFI held packed briefings offering a “surreal” picture of the last Gaza onslaught, saying that Israelis were creating “inspiring stuff” to “make the world a better place” and that Israelis experienced “the worst of the recent war in Gaza.”

Right next door to the European Commission [in Brussels] are the offices of the European Friends of Israel (EFI), one of the largest pan-European parliamentary groups of its kind, with 1000 members of parliament from across the continent at national and European levels.
Set up to “improve the overall relationship between the European Union and Israel”, EFI brings together every national parliaments’ Israel friendship group from the EU’s 28 member-states, and a new Israel friendship group within the European Parliament. …

Its most recent published financial data is its 2012 budget, listed as €400,000. In [Irish journalist] David Cronin’s extensive research on EFI for Spinwatch, he says that its status as an ‘informal grouping’ means it doesn’t have to reveal how it is funded. Cronin also describes the extensive arms industry connections with the EFI; IAI (then called Israel Aircraft Industries), one of the largest suppliers of weapons to the Israeli military for example, was among the sponsors of the EFI’s launch in September 2006.

During Israel’s bombardment of Gaza in the summer of 2014, ‘Operation Protective Edge’, the EFI held packed briefings in the European Parliament… EFI has been keen to reframe the image of the country as not just being defined by conflict, sometimes to the point of surrealism. A press release post ‘Operation Protective Edge’ full of “inspiring stuff” based on Israeli innovation says, “Whilst thousands of rockets rained down on the country during the latest conflict, Israelis have – between running to bomb shelters – been creating technologies and devising strategies to make the world a better place.”

A recent EFI parliamentary event describes life for Israelis on the border with Gaza, who experienced “the worst of the recent war in Gaza, with quite literally thousands of rockets fired indiscriminately at the citizens of Sh’ar Hanegev”. Aside from events and briefings at the European Parliament, EFI also organises trips for parliamentarians to Israel. It has also been very pro-active in promoting the EU-Israel Agreement Conformity Assessment and Acceptance of Industrial Products (ACAA) agreement. Cronin says, “Helping to steer an EU-Israel trade deal through the European Parliament has undoubtedly been EFI’s biggest achievement in its relatively short history.”…
Cronin documents how the EFI exerted a “hellish pressure” according to one MEP [member of the European Parliament] on parliamentarians not to block ACAA, and how they pushed the benefits to the European public of the improved access to Israeli medicines that ACAA would usher in. The ACAA was passed but bans financial ties with illegal Israeli settlements. The EFI has been lobbying to lift this ruling.

Hellish pressure is of course reminiscent of descriptions of the Israel lobby on Capitol Hill. Another group is based in the US and has a much bigger budget than EFI but is also aimed at whitewashing the settlements:

Israel Allies Foundation [IAF] is a US-based organisation with an office in Brussels. It lists its budget in the EU transparency register as €1,500,000. According to its website it “works with parliaments around the world to mobilize political support for Israel based on Judeo-Christian values.” It was founded in 2004 by Israeli politicians seeking support from the “Christian world”.,,

MEP Magdi Cristiano Allam and MEP Roger Helmer, both members of the IAF caucus in the European Parliament, went on a ‘fact-finding mission’ to the occupied territories paid for by IAF. They tabled parliamentary questions challenging the European Commission Israel Grants Guidelines of July 2013 which do not allow EU funding to go to the occupied territories, arguing these areas were not under occupation.
IAF pledged to step up its lobbying in response to the guidelines.

Some of the report’s history on Israeli PR effort shows how much money is involved fighting boycott pressure:

In 2011 Israel was looking for PR firms in ten countries in order to improve its international reputation, particularly the way Europe perceives the country. According to PR newsletter the Holmes Report the contract worth seven figures focuses on “national industries and characteristics that are often obscured by the focus on war and conflict. These include the country’s booming high-tech sector, along with Israel’s culture, economy, food and music.”

The unprecedented PR move came amidst an increasingly vocal movement to boycott Israeli products, particularly strong in Europe, and a Palestinian campaign for UN recognition of statehood.
The Holmes Report “understands that Euro RSCG PR [now Havas PR] has been tapped for the UK and France. Other firms thought to be involved are Kreab Gavin Anderson, Burson Marsteller and CNC, in Belgium, Italy and
Germany, respectively. In addition, firms have also been hired in the Nordics, Spain, Netherlands and the Czech Republic.” The total budget was estimated at $3.26 million a year. Indeed, Havas PR reports on its website that
one of its clients is the Embassy of Israel in the UK.
The EU’s Transparency Register data from 2013 showed that the Israeli Mission to the European Union paid €150,000-€200,000 to the PR agency Kreab Gavin Andersen, though not the dates of the contract…. The PR firm was tasked with convincing MEPs that blocking ACAA [trade agreement] was not the best way for them to show their objection to the expansion of Israeli settlements.

The British country rebranding firm Acanchi (see Rwanda case study) [page 17; Rwanda is accused of war crimes but it is being marketed as an international success story] was also contracted to create a new Brand Israel in 2008. According to Ido Aharoni, the foreign ministry official who commissioned the programme, “Our research shows that Israel’s brand is essentially the conflict.” He continued, “Even those who recognize that Israel is in the right are not attracted to it, because they see it as a supplier of bad news. The conclusion is that it is more important for Israel to be attractive than to be right.”

There’s that old expression, it’s better to be lucky than good. Better to be attractive than right.

About Philip Weiss

Philip Weiss is Founder and Co-Editor of Mondoweiss.net.

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41 Responses

  1. Boomer
    January 20, 2015, 11:56 am

    It isn’t surprising, I guess, that Israel would apply to other countries the same kinds of techniques that work so well for it in the U.S., but I had not realized the extent of it. I suppose that America provides plenty of money for Israel’s lobbying efforts, via direct appropriation of tax money and via indirect means, including “charitable” contributions from pro-Israel Americans. Coupled with our diplomatic arm twisting, veto threats, weapons, etc., it makes for a powerful force for evil. I’d say that for Israel it is more important to be powerful than to be attractive or right.

    • CigarGod
      January 21, 2015, 10:07 am

      That’s an awful nice photograph. I notice MW runs a lot of really high quality photos of low quality people. I’m wondering how this comes about. If i was going to do a piece on PR Bottomfeeders…id have a photo that showed him with bad hair, slipped eyewear, beads of sweat, bad teeth (a brit afterall) and maybe focusing on his uvula. Im just wondering what else was in the envelope with the photo. Ya know…dont most folks just look at the pictures?

  2. John O
    January 20, 2015, 12:07 pm

    Roger Helmer, unsurprisingly, is a one-time Tory who defected to UKIP, homophobic, a climate change denier, and altogether about as right-wing as British politicians come.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Roger_Helmer

  3. oldgeezer
    January 20, 2015, 12:11 pm

    I hope this group speaks loudly and often. No one is going to buy that line and it will help show how ridiculous Israeli excuses for their war crimes, and crimes against humanity, are.

    It would be nice to have these apologists for Israeli terrorism clearly identify themselves to the public.

    • K Renner
      January 20, 2015, 1:15 pm

      It’s more of the same as what you’re going to see on an increasing basis, and it’s infuriating and yet positive when you consider how desperate a lot of these kinds of people are getting, that they sink into outright delusion.

      I recall in Toronto this past summer the JDL was actively attacking people and you were getting Jewish teenagers going up to speak all teary-eyed and saying “we Israelis care more about the Palestinians then they care about themselves, so how dare anyone criticize us!”

      I mean, there will always be those who’re malevolent enough or stupid enough or so entrenched in the “Jews are special and can do no wrong” mentality that they’re always going to buy this sort of thing, but it’s something else entirely for the rest of us– those that can be talked to and those who know the facts from the garbage that the pro-Israel camp puts out.

      • a blah chick
        January 20, 2015, 2:29 pm

        “…you were getting Jewish teenagers going up to speak all teary-eyed and saying “we Israelis care more about the Palestinians then they care about themselves, so how dare anyone criticize us!”

        Straight out of the hasbara text book.

    • CigarGod
      January 21, 2015, 10:15 am

      I dont know, OG.
      I am constantly being counseled to lower my expectations if i want to survive. Im told i need to write to the level of the Morlock’s ethics and the Eloi’s intelligence.
      Can the public spot anything?

  4. just
    January 20, 2015, 12:15 pm

    Welcomed exposure and more sunlight. How come it makes me so nauseated? This may be the first time I’ve really ever said a sincere thanks to a CEO.

    Would really love to know how much of US taxpayer billions are being used for caca like this.

    “EFI was launched with funding from the Israeli arms industry”

    Professional Pro- Zionist hasbarists~ your headline says it all, Phil.

    (Roger Helmer ought to exchange his hilarious flag pin for the ol’ blue and white one with the star)

  5. amigo
    January 20, 2015, 12:18 pm

    Ireland’s FM Charlie Flanagan is a member of the Oireachtas ,(Irish parliament) friends of Israel.His closeness to this propaganda group informs his pro Israel actions , such as convincing Ireland,s PM to vote against the resolution accepting Palestine as a State.On the bright side , he will not hold this position in 2017 as his party is going to suffer a meltdown in the next election.This jerk Flanagan wines and dines with the two zionist criminals who publish propaganda from our the embassy they occupy in Dublin.

    One might laugh at these vile propagandists but they are dangerous as is expected from people who will do anything for money.

  6. amigo
    January 20, 2015, 12:22 pm

    Don,t mention ze 50 year occupation or the slaughter of 2200 Palestinians .Oh no, lets just focus on the discomfort and inconvenience for those poor occupiers and the squatters who make it possible.

    Cry me a river.

    • oldgeezer
      January 20, 2015, 12:25 pm

      The Crocodile Liberation Organization has a single demand. That their tears be returned to them as their rightful owners.

      • just
        January 20, 2015, 12:49 pm

        LOL!

  7. Atlantaiconoclast
    January 20, 2015, 12:32 pm

    The quickest way to end this tragic special relationship is for Western societies to dramatically downsize the power of their respective states. End the Federal Reserve, dramatically reduce the “Defense” budget, lower taxes, and end ALL government aid to other nations.

  8. Bumblebye
    January 20, 2015, 12:39 pm

    Huh! As a UKIP member, Helmer represents a partythat doesn’t even believe in UK membership of the EU!

  9. K Renner
    January 20, 2015, 1:19 pm

    If only saying things that show the speaker has a massive disconnect with reality or sanity when it comes to the whole Gaza issue were actually the truth, eh? Jesus Christ are these people absolutely mental.

  10. amigo
    January 20, 2015, 2:00 pm

    “Whilst thousands of rockets rained down on the country during the latest conflict, Israelis have – between running to bomb shelters – been creating technologies and devising strategies to make the world a better place.” .

    A question.

    1, Which Israelis are they referring to .

    “Israel’s Arabs are extremely concerned by the mounting tensions between Israel and Iran and claim that the lack of shelters in their cities will leave them exposed in case a war erupts.

    According to data obtained by Ynet, nearly half of Israel’s Arabs do not own gas masks, and most of them would have nowhere to hide in case Israel is attacked.

    “I won’t be able to remain here if a war breaks out. I’ve informed relatives in Nablus that in case anything happens our family will be staying with them because there are no secure areas in our city,” said Ahmed Masarwa, a father of three from Baqa al-Gharbiya.

    “We won’t be able to stay here if a war erupts. I don’t want to be a victim of a failed war initiated by a prime minister who cares only for his own interests,” Ahmed told Ynet this week. ”

    http://www.ynetnews.com/articles/0,7340,L-4271224,00.html

    Another question.Why are these smart highly intelligent and creative Israelis unable to devise a strategy to make peace.Now that would make the world a better place.

    Off to your bunkers folks and don,t come out until you have the answer to ending the occupation and living in peace and security next to your neighbours , allbeit on their ;land

    • just
      January 20, 2015, 2:12 pm

      +1 ! Good stuff, amigo.

    • a blah chick
      January 20, 2015, 2:33 pm

      In fact some Bedouin activists took the lack of shelters for their community to the High Court and they ruled that the government did not have to provide them with any because they were not lining in recognized communities.

      I believe that the first Israeli children injured by Gaza rockets were two Bedouin girls but nobody talks about them.

  11. ivri
    January 20, 2015, 3:14 pm

    What we see here is inevitable and piling smears won`t change that. What goes on in Europe is now converging with what has been going with Israel for some time now. An instinctive anti-Israel European attitude cannot be reconciled anymore with Europe`s own worries and separating the European scene form the Israeli one (“Palestine is distinct”), a past favorite in Europe, is becoming too implausible to be sustained by serious people there. The left-of-center/liberal/human-rights-advocates, or whatever they like to call (or see) themselves will continue with the old tunes but with decreased following and influence.
    It is widely recognized now that Israel was just unlucky enough to be the first to encounter a global issue of our times, simply because of its physically proximity, and what happened there was a harbinger for things to come worldwide – a broader malaise that cannot be hidden anymore. The US understood that long time ago, followed later by Canada and Australia, and now it`s the turn of the last leg of the West – Europe.

    • Annie Robbins
      January 20, 2015, 3:51 pm

      It is widely recognized now that Israel was just unlucky enough to be the first to encounter a global issue of our times, simply because of its physically proximity

      don’t get ahead of yourself. while this hasbara theme has been around for a long long time, the only so called ‘recognition’ is that israel would love everyone to agree and internalize. what’s widely recognized is the talking pt; ‘tiny island in a sea of fanatics’ or ‘tiny israel on edge of volcano’ etc.

      but there is wide recognition that israel, along with the US, has been inciting and instigating instability in the ME for a long long time and that this serves israel’s expansion. the excuse israel needs to expand and control occupied palestine for its so called security. people are not stupid ivri, it will never be “widely recognized” the colonial oppressor is “just unlucky”.

    • oldgeezer
      January 20, 2015, 4:06 pm

      Risible. I dare say delusional.

      While there’s little doubt that Israel now faces some Islamic terrorism (which it has helped foment and form) the core issues are it’s oppression of innocents. The primary source of actions against it have no roots in Islam. Groups such as the PLO are comprised of both Muslims and Christians.

      You don’t get to whitewash Israeli crimes against humanity that easily.

      You have Canada’s support due to a messianic PM and not due to the feelings of it’s citizens or any other logical basis.

    • ivri
      January 20, 2015, 5:06 pm

      Israel may have claimed that long time ago but people in Europe didn`t want to listen. But in this era whatever has a global dimension – and few would deny that the issues with Islam today qualify for that characterization – can have the main focus (and headlines) be confined to just one of its global flashpoints only for so long. While it`s true that each flashpoint may have a local narrative and own history, it is also true that in a global era EVERYTHING within the same category get sooner or later linked. Globalization is not a cliché – it`s a reality and a process with intrinsic mechanisms (just watch for instance how strongly what goes on in faraway Syria or Iraq affects Europe). these type of realities must have their effect on Israel`s case too, the rhetoric to the contrary notwithstanding, simply because simply that`s how things work.

      • Annie Robbins
        January 20, 2015, 5:24 pm

        ivri, perhaps you are unaware israel is facilitating/supporting jihadists /al nusra etc in syria and just attacked forces combatting that threat. there’s only so much hasbara one can stomach when lobby henchmen are advocating the fanatics take over syria. give it a rest.

      • ivri
        January 20, 2015, 6:06 pm

        @Annie
        I hope you don`t really believe that nonsensical argument – advanced by some crazy propagandists because it appears that temporarily there is something helpful for Israel in what the Jihadists do. But that`s all what into it and in reality the Jihadists are a huge headache for everybody, Israel included. Get serious. As for the clash with Hezbollah it is a different matter – just got conflated. It is simply impossible to be precise in the convoluted and chaotic conditions in Syria.

      • Annie Robbins
        January 20, 2015, 10:45 pm

        it appears that temporarily there is something helpful for Israel in what the Jihadists do.

        wonders never cease.

        in reality the Jihadists are a huge headache for everybody, Israel included.

        but it’s worth it now isn’t it ivri, or else they wouldn’t do it. what’s a headache if it means securing the motherland?

        look on the upside, with Jihadists there right on the border it makes the job of the pr hacks so much easier. the little oasis on the side of the volcano. the reality i’m facing ivri, is that all israel ever changes is the pr, not the agenda. headache or no headache “it appears that ..there is something helpful for Israel in what the Jihadists do.”

      • ivri
        January 20, 2015, 6:20 pm

        On second thought it is perhaps better to view those that propagate this nonsense as conspiracy-theory fans (and propagandists)

      • Mooser
        January 21, 2015, 12:12 pm

        “On second thought…”

        Oh, I’m sorry, what was the first “thought”?

    • Cliff
      January 20, 2015, 6:24 pm

      @irvi

      Look you cultist, there is no Israel without the destruction of Palestinian society during and before and immediately after the Mandate.

      There is no Israel without mass ethnic cleansing of the indigenous Palestinian majority population and the theft of their land and property and natural resources.

      THAT is what this conflict is about. Not f’king ISLAM.

      Stop f’king lying ALL THE TIME.

      I really wish there was a Heaven/Hell, because [….] like you would burn there for eternity.

      • ivri
        January 21, 2015, 2:58 am

        @Cliff
        You can get angry with a person, me here, but that`s only proxy for the real cause of your problems: Mr. Reality. With that guy it`s harder to mess – although you and likeminded people just never give up doing that. It is already 70 years that people try to turn facts upside down in regard to Israel but to no avail. Mr. Reality keeps proving them wrong. That must be frustrating but still don`t go too far – among other assets Mr. Reality also owns hell.

      • Cliff
        January 22, 2015, 6:23 pm

        The reality is that there is no Jewish State without a Jewish majority.

        There is no Jewish majority with all those Arabs.

        The Jewish terrorists began their campaign of ethnic cleansing and massacre months before the Israeli declaration of ‘independence.’

        Your history is a lie. Your ideology is a lie.

    • amigo
      January 22, 2015, 2:12 pm

      ivri, if the EU is so anti Israel , then why do you not call for Israel to end it,s exports to us.It only represents circa 25% of your total exports so no big deal.Also as an additional punitive measure , quit importing EU products and really deliver the double whammy.

      Yep ivri, show those EU antisemitic Jew haters who is da boss.

  12. JLewisDickerson
    January 20, 2015, 3:21 pm

    RE: The photo of Roger Helmer, British member of the European Parliament and a friend of Israel

    MY COMMENT: That ‘stache is quite impressive! ! !

  13. JLewisDickerson
    January 20, 2015, 3:37 pm

    RE: A press release post ‘Operation Protective Edge’ full of “inspiring stuff” based on Israeli innovation says, “Whilst thousands of rockets rained down on the country during the latest conflict, Israelis have – between running to bomb shelters – been creating technologies and devising strategies to make the world a better place.” ~ Weiss

    AN EXAMPLE OF THE “INSPIRING STUFF” DEVELOPED IN ISRAEL AND COMING SOON* TO A COMMUNITY NEAR YOU:
    “IDF Skunk Cannon Odorizes West Bank”, by Richard Silverstein, Tikun Olam, 3/06/13

    [EXCERPT] The IDF routinely uses a truly disgusting weapon of war to maintain the Occupation: a skunk cannon. To the uninitiated, imagine instead of fire hoses and police dogs, Sheriff Bull Connor used a massive stream of raw sewage mixed with skunk oil and let it fly not just on the civil rights marchers but all the citizens and businesses in town. Then imagine you’re one of the victims and it’s flying at you from a truck the size of a small tank. The ostensible purpose of this vehicle is to disrupt protests on the West Bank. Keep in mind, that these are for the most part totally non-violent incidents in which demonstrators are expressing their legitimate opposition to issues like building the Separation Wall, which in itself is an illegal project under international law. In short, the purpose of the skunk cannon is not to break up violent rallies or protect the IDF from the wrath of Palestinians. It is purely meant to suppress the political will of the Palestinian people.
    Ynet reports (Hebrew) that in addition to spraying protesters, those who operate the vehicles randomly spray residential homes and businesses having nothing to do with the demonstrations. This is collective punishment . . .

    ENTIRE ARTICLE – http://www.richardsilverstein.com/2013/03/06/idf-skunk-cannon-odorizes-west-bank/

    * FROM WIKIPEDIA AS OF 11/16/2014 [Skunk (weapon)]:

    [EXCERPTS] “Skunk” is a malodorant, non-lethal weapon used for crowd control by the Israeli Defense Forces. Deriving its name from the animal of the same name, “Skunk” is dispersed as a form of mist, fired from a water cannon, which leaves a terrible odor of rot or sewage on whatever it touches. It does not wash off easily and is said to linger on clothes for up to five years.[1] . . .
    . . . The inventors plan to market Skunk to other forces worldwide. . .

    SOURCE – http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Skunk_(weapon)

    • JLewisDickerson
      January 20, 2015, 4:03 pm

      P.S. FROM WIKIPEDIA AS OF 1/20/2015 [Skunk (weapon)]:

      [EXCERPTS] “Skunk” is a malodorant, non-lethal weapon for crowd control used by the Israel Defense Forces. It was developed and is manufactured by Odortec, with two supporting companies, Man and Beit-Alfa Technologies.[1] The material used is organic and non-toxic.[2] According to the manufacturer’s safety sheet it may cause skin irritation, eye or abdominal pain, and if inhaled, breathing difficulties.[1]
      Deriving its name from the animal of the same name, “Skunk” is dispersed as a form of yellow mist, fired from a water cannon, which leaves a powerful odor similar to rot or sewage on whatever it touches. The inventors plan to market Skunk to law enforcement agencies worldwide.[citation needed]
      A BBC reporter describes its effects as follows:

      “Imagine the worst, most foul thing you have ever smelled. An overpowering mix of rotting meat, old socks that haven’t been washed for weeks – topped off with the pungent waft of an open sewer. . .Imagine being covered in the stuff as it is liberally sprayed from a water cannon. Then imagine not being able to get rid of the stench for at least three days, no matter how often you try to scrub yourself clean.”[3]

      A reporter for Reuters described its effect in the following words:

      Imagine taking a chunk of rotting corpse from a stagnant sewer, placing it in a blender and spraying the filthy liquid in your face. Your gag reflex goes off the charts and you can’t escape, because the nauseating stench persists for days.[4] . . .

      . . . Spraying skunk liquid has developed into one of the preferred measures adopted by the IDF to meet the challenge of Palestinians who, eschewing armed violence and suicide bombings, have refashioned their resistance to forms of civil disobedience and nonviolent demonstrations. The new tactic was devised to tamp down organized civilian protests in the West Bank.[11]
      East Jerusalem Palestinians claim that Israeli police douse shops, restaurants and hotels in their area indiscriminately with skunk, using a stream strong enough to smash windows, the effect of which is to deter shopping. According to B’Tselem the repetitive use of the substance raises suspicions that it is being deployed as a punitive measure against entire villages where demonstrations are commonplace.[12] According to Ynet and video evidence, it has been used against Palestinian residential areas and businesses unconnected to demonstrations.[13]
      Nabi Saleh has been cited by Amnesty International as one village where the behavior of the IDF in suppressing peaceful demonstrations appears to be oppressive, ‘may constitute collective punishment, outlawed by the Fourth Geneva Convention’ and the use of skunk there seems to be ‘punitive’.[14] In Hebron it was used on the 26 February 2012 to disperse a crowd of an estimated 1,000 people which clashed with Israeli soldiers during a protest described as commemorating the anniversary of the Cave of the Patriarchs Massacre or as pressing for the reopening of the zone of Shuhada Street, described as apartheid.[15] On the day a funeral cortege also took place. The mourners, who had waited for the riot to end, and who had informed Israeli soldiers of the nature of their procession to the Muslim cemetery, were also reportedly dowsed with the liquid, as was the corpse awaiting burial.[16]
      It was sprayed in late June 2014 throughout Bethlehem’s Aida refugee camp in what residents describe as an ‘unprovoked and unexpected’ attack.[12] Among Palestinians, the liquid is known simply as “shit”.[12]
      According to testimonies collected by the Association for Civil Rights in Israel, a pro-Palestinian NGO, the liquid is sprayed indiscriminately in crowded public areas, and at times with no apparent connection to public disturbances.[17] It is suspected by B’tselem of being used as a collective punishment measure against Palestinians,[18] and has been used regularly against the villagers of Bil’in, Ni’lin, Kafr Qaddum and Nabi Saleh, where weekly protests against the occupation are practiced.[1] In response to the B’tselem report, the Israel Defense Force has stated that ‘Skunk’ is used only when demonstrators become violent or engage in vandalism and detailed the rules of engagement in which it is used.[19]

    • JLewisDickerson
      January 21, 2015, 7:29 pm

      P.P.S. ALSO RE: A press release post ‘Operation Protective Edge’ full of “inspiring stuff” based on Israeli innovation says, “Whilst thousands of rockets rained down on the country during the latest conflict, Israelis have – between running to bomb shelters – been creating technologies and devising strategies to make the world a better place.” ~ Weiss

      FOR ANOTHER EXAMPLE OF THE “INSPIRING STUFF” DEVELOPED IN ISRAEL, SEE:

      “Two Secretive Israeli Companies Reportedly Bugged The US Telecommunications Grid For The NSA”, By Michael Kelley, Business Insider, 6/07/13
      LINK – http://www.businessinsider.com/israelis-bugged-the-us-for-the-nsa-2013-6

      “IDF Unit 8200 Cyberwar Veterans Developed NSA Snooping Technology”, By Richard Silverstein, Tikun Olam, 6/07/13
      LINK – http://www.richardsilverstein.com/2013/06/09/top-secret-iaf-unit-exposed/

      “Meet the Israeli-linked firm that sold Big Brother machines to Mubarak, Qaddafi – and Washington”, by Max Blumenthal, Mondoweiss, 6/15/13
      LINK – http://mondoweiss.net/2013/06/machines-qaddafi-washington.html

      “What was the Israeli Involvement in Collecting U.S. Communications Intel for NSA? ~ By Haaretz, The Associated Press and Reuters, informationclearinghouse.info, 6/08/13
      LINK – http://www.informationclearinghouse.info/article35215.htm

  14. CigarGod
    January 21, 2015, 9:55 am

    Makes me wonder if these firms/individuals are registered as “foreign agents”. I think we had a discussion on this a couple days ago.

  15. eljay
    January 21, 2015, 10:46 am

    According to Ido Aharoni, the foreign ministry official who commissioned the programme, “Our research shows that Israel’s brand is essentially the conflict.” He continued, “Even those who recognize that Israel is in the right are not attracted to it, because they see it as a supplier of bad news. The conclusion is that it is more important for Israel to be attractive than to be right.”

    No need for the rapist to stop beating and raping his victim or to set her free when he can just issue press releases describing her clean surroundings – including fresh flowers daily, a nice TV set and a soft mattress – and how he is devising strategies to make the world a better place.

    Only people who are anti-rapist would continue to protest this clearly wonderful man’s past and on-going crimes.

    Zio-supremacists are truly hateful and immoral people. There isn’t an act* of injustice and immorality they don’t deem justifiable.

    (*An act committed by them. Hypocrites that they are, if the same act were committed against them, they would denounce it as unjustifiable.)

  16. Les
    January 21, 2015, 11:09 am

    Wasn’t it Germany’s media that made clear to its readers that the Jews of the Warsaw Ghetto were just as powerful as their occupier, that justified calling the Jewish resistance terrorists?

  17. Pixel
    January 22, 2015, 10:49 am

    Zionism has infested UK/Europe and Australia to a greater degree than many imagine.

    Political Pesticide?

  18. Walid
    January 25, 2015, 11:02 am

    Activists in Gaza announced a new Gaza freedom ship or ships in the works only this time it’s in reverse. Instead of heading to Gaza, the ships will depart from Gaza with hundreds of Gazans needing medical treatment on the outside. It should happen with much publicity within the coming 2 months.

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