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Israeli diplomat is ‘sick of… self-righteous commemorations for Hiroshima and Nagasaki’

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Shocking story in the Guardian. Israel has been forced to apologize for a comment by its new / now ‘suspended but not fired’ head of covert online student public diplomacy on the occasion of the Japanese commemoration of the nuclear attacks by the U.S. at the end of World War II.

“I am sick of the Japanese, ‘Human Rights’ and ‘Peace’ groups the world over holding their annual self-righteous commemorations for the Hiroshima and Nagasaki victims,” [Daniel] Seaman wrote on his Facebook page. “Hiroshima and Nagasaki were the consequence of Japanese aggression. You reap what you sow.”…

The apology was issued by Ya’akov Amidror, national security adviser to the Israeli prime minister, Binyamin Netanyahu. A government official said the incident was “one of the least comfortable moments for Israel in Japan”.

Seaman, a former director of the government press office who has a reputation for being abrasive, recently took up a new post to promote positive images of Israel on social media networks.

Amazingly, Harriet Sherwood reports several disgusting statements Seaman made before this, including an Islamophobic comment on Ramadan and this response to the demand by the Palestinian negotiator, Saeb Erekat, for an end to new settlement expansion: “Is there a diplomatic way of saying ‘Go F*** yourself’?” Apparently those statements did not result in apologies.

And yes, I wonder what the effect of Seaman’s statement will be on Holocaust commemoration. He has surely furthered Holocaust denial. 

Philip Weiss

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25 Responses

  1. just on August 23, 2013, 10:00 am

    Fitting that Israel would pick this racist, drooling miscreant to be the “head of online public diplomacy”.

    The internet bit him and Israel in the tuchus– that’s irony & justice at its best!

    Couldn’t happen to a more vile representative of a perfectly vile government.

    Dude– take your own words to heart: “You reap what you sow.”.”

  2. seafoid on August 23, 2013, 10:09 am

    Westerners may have been conditioned to accept the hasbara points given the Shoah happened in the West but the Japanese owe nothing to Zionism. Very stupid to push them on this, given Japanese history. Of course in the Zionist view punishment for WW2 crimes is infinite and so too is Israel’s right to the whatever the hell it wants.

    Welcome to the real world, bots.

  3. on August 23, 2013, 10:57 am

    You missed the gem, Phil. The person responsible for the comments posted on Facebook was Daniel Seaman — Israel’s head of online public diplomacy! Way to go Israel!!

  4. piotr on August 23, 2013, 11:16 am

    Op-Ed: Defend Daniel Seaman!
    Published: Arutz Sheva,
    Saturday, August 17, 2013 10:29 PM
    Haaretz called him an abusive racist. See what you think.

    [editorial comment by Prof. Steven Plaut who teaches at the University of Haifa and is author of “The Scout” (available from Gefen Publishing House).]

    Israel’s Left has a new cause. It is operating a jihad against the freedom of speech of poor Daniel Seaman. He is the outgoing director-general of the Public Diplomacy and Diaspora Affairs Ministry and he is a man who speaks his mind.

    [Plaut lists all the admirable frank statements of Daniel Seaman, including]

    When the Palestinians held their “Nakba Day” mourning, he posted, “The Palestinians commemorated the Naqba with a 65 second siren in Ramallah. That’s not nearly enough time to stop and pause to think about how stupid they are.

    The funny/puzzling thing is that all the incendiary quotes are cited by Plaut with no defense whatsoever, simply as examples how great Seaman is. By the way, in what sense is Daniel Seaman “outgoing”: “on his way out”, or “communicating easily”? In any case, what Arutz Sheva writes is what Benjamin Netanyahu thinks. A bunch of primitive yahoos if you ask me. This is the alternative to hypocrisy (which is more fluently practiced in USA).

    • seafoid on August 23, 2013, 12:16 pm

      The settler echo chamber is like the Fox one to the power of 70 in respect of 70 AD , the last time the Jewish state disappeared.
      Chez Fox there is no global warming. With the settlers they are right on everything. Anyone who disagrees was a camp guard at Majdanek.

      • ziusudra on August 24, 2013, 2:17 am

        Greetings seafoid,
        loving your post as usual.
        Seafoid, only 5K returned in 456BC to Jerusalem.
        They were so few in numbers that in 200BC, they
        gave up Hebrew & took on Aramaic. They also started
        migrating to Greece.
        Aramaic was spoken by other tribes that had nought to
        do with the 12 tribes that were desbanded earlier.
        They were always a minority in Canaan/Falesteena.
        They had semi autonomy after the Macedonians in 164BC
        to 63BC as the Hasmonean.
        The Romans ruled as of 63BC.
        PS A State? Everything is relative. Take care.

  5. Citizen on August 23, 2013, 11:27 am

    Maybe the issue is disproportionate response? Israel does that as a matter of policy–and that’s against the non-Jewish natives. Maybe he was ticked off because he thought somebody would apply the A bomb memorial movement to something like the Nakba or OP Cast lead, or Deir Yassein?
    Hitler’s response to Versailles/Weimar Jewish power, was disproportionate, right? How about the Allied bombing of Dresden? How about Sherman’s march to the sea? How about 9/11? Did the chickens come home to roost, or was that simply an immoral terrorist attack on average Americans (who happened to work in the twin towers)? I think reality is going to put The Onion out of business.

  6. Woody Tanaka on August 23, 2013, 11:48 am

    The fact that the israeli state apologized for one of this serial slanderer’s statements demonstrates that the apology is worthless. By not muzzling this dog earlier, the government demonstrates that it is sorry the Japanese were rightly offended, and not sorry that one of its officers was making these vile, racist remarks.

  7. JohnAdamTurnbull on August 23, 2013, 12:08 pm

    This storng evidence of a developing business and diplomatic link between Japan and Israel.

    In January, a much-quoted business article published in the Japan times ( made some bland comparisons between the two “island” countries and then recommended an “affinity-based” immigration policy to help spark the stalled Japanese economy.

    I’ll ignore the blinkered analysis and the dumb-ass racism, and just point out that the article suggests a popular interest in closer relations between the two governments. Since Japan is the place where I first discovered racism (other than my own), the idea of co-operation between these two occupier economies is worrisome at best.

    And then there is this little puzzle:

    Japanese advertising is a field of land-mines, but this one seems special.

  8. Xpat on August 23, 2013, 12:28 pm

    Good old Danny. As I posted last week.

    Elliot says:
    August 14, 2013 at 9:07 pm
    Folks, I knew Daniel Seaman many years ago. He’s been doing hasbara for decades. Trust me on this, if this is his project, he is going to provide us with a lot of fodder.

    The good news is that Israel has no come back. In the past, Netanyahu would have said: “Holocaust!” and be done with it, but this thing just kept on growing into a front page scandal.

    • Denis on August 23, 2013, 3:33 pm

      Elliot — there is a strong deju vu quality to this post on Seaman.

      I clearly remember your comment to Annie’s annie’s Aug14 post. You also gave us one of Seaman’s quotes: “I am the one who withheld press passes for Palestinian reporters.”

      And I contributed another toxic Seaman spew: “The Palestinians commemorated the Naqba with a 65 second siren in Ramallah. That’s not nearly enough time to stop and pause to think about how stupid they are.”

      As GoI’s once and future Minister if Internet Propaganda, Seaman is the reincarnation of Joseph Goebbels, with whom he bears a most remarkable likeness.

      Compare . . .




      My point here is not (just) to regurgitate past comments, but to take this opportunity to emphasize again how toxic this Seaman creep is.

      • ziusudra on August 24, 2013, 2:33 am

        Greetings Denis,
        Hilarious link on Zio maniac Seaman.
        For penance, he should be forced to come to Germany & listen to the Germans in every village, who are sick & tired & complaining of commerations of the ne’er ending shows of the nazis against them.
        PS Maybe all Europeans should monthly put on hate parades against
        the Roman Empire? Oh, no they were my anscesters, Forget that one.

  9. American on August 23, 2013, 12:57 pm

    “”I am sick of the Israeli ‘Human Rights’ and ‘Peace’ groups the world over holding their annual self-righteous commemorations for the Tel Aviv and Jerusalem nuclear bombing victims,” [Sheik Abracadabra wrote on his Facebook page]. “Tel Aviv and Jerusalem were the consequence of Israeli aggression. You reap what you sow.”…

    And so it goes…

  10. xanadou on August 23, 2013, 1:08 pm

    As do others, The Guardian does not allow comments in connection with any article that speaks on the subject of, or is related to, Israel. Perhaps now would be a good time to review this editorial policy. Perhaps it’s time for Israel to take the hand of the monkeys’ eyes and ears, and clamp it harder on the mouth. Time is no longer on Israel’s side. The world’s growing revulsion upon seeing and hearing about incidents of unconscionable stupidity that reflect on Israel, might just provide a much needed “hmmm” moment where it counts. And, no, such criticism would not be the tedious opportunistic fantasy about Europe’s “historic anti-semitism”. Rather, Israel would do well to contemplate John Donne’s most timely meditation:
    “No man (Nation) is an Iland, intire of it selfe; every man is a peece of the Continent (World), a part of the maine; if a Clod bee washed away by the Sea, Europe (Israel) is the lesse, as well as if a Promontorie were, as well as if a Mannor of thy friends or of thine owne were; any mans death diminishes me, because I am involved in Mankinde; And therefore never send to know for whom the bell tolls; It tolls for thee.”
    (My updates for emphasis, in brackets.)

    • hungrydave on August 24, 2013, 8:58 pm

      That’s not true. The guardian doesn’t have a comments section for its news stories, only for opinion pieces. I think Harriet’s pieces qualify as opinion sometimes and news others so it depends.

      I grant you that it is highly moderated, and comments are closed overnight, largely because hasbara agents (from cifwatch – lol – what a bunch of losers) report any comment that’s not utterly pro israel so the guardian probably needs more staff to cover I/P pieces.

      The UK is largely either not bothered or pro-palestinian these days. There was a sea change around the time of cast lead. I’m old enough to remember when public opinion here shifted over Sinn Fein and the IRA, and it feels a bit like that. There’s still some zionist pressure on politicians, but it’s minimal compared to the US. Obviously there’s still a lot of pro Israel power in the more right wing establishment, the atlantic bridge, multinationals and weapons companies linked to the US etc, but it’s obvious that Cameron has to walk a fine line between that and public opinion. I think the tory position at the moment is trying not to seem too pro-israel while manoeuvring where possible to stop any of Israel’s consequences coming back to bite it which curries favour with their military and corporation links. It’s nothing like America where politicians often seem more pro israel than pro america. I even heard the phrase ‘america-firster’ being bandied about by John McCain as if americans should put Israel first over the US! Mental! And he says it openly as a point of pride. That wouldn’t wash in the UK. I think the excessive hasbara postings on the guardian are because it has a large american readership. In short, all the hasbara eggs are now in the american basket.

  11. DavidK on August 23, 2013, 2:55 pm

    “This will surely further Holocaust denial.”
    What does that really mean? Does that mean we had to accept the primacy of Jewish suffering during WWII and pay endless reparations, erect memorials in hundreds of cities around the world and watch Israel who’s government claims to represent all Jews kill and main with impunity forever after .
    If Seaman wants to believe that the the Japanese brought the atomic bomb upon themselves, then what did he think about the worldwide Jewish boycott of German goods in the thirties when Germany was on the verge of economic collapse . Does he think that ordinary suffering Germans might regard that as traitorous. How about that as Vladimir Putin recently commented that seventy percent of the Bolsheviks were Jewish and Communisn is the ideological polar opposite of Nazi fascism maybe the German felt at the time the Jews could be trusted just like Roosevelt when he rounded up Japanese Americans and put them in concentration camps.

  12. Justpassingby on August 23, 2013, 5:58 pm

    Says a diplomat from a government that drags up the holocaust every other day…

  13. Daniel Rich on August 23, 2013, 6:26 pm

    Q: “Hiroshima and Nagasaki were the consequence of Japanese aggression. You reap what you sow.”…

    R: “Auschwitz and Buchenwald were the consequences of World Jewry aggression [declaring war on Germany in 1933]. You reap what you sow…”

    That makes sense, doesn’t it?

    Having visited Hiroshima, Nagasaki, Auschwitz and Buchenwald, my personal conclusion is one of great tragedies and the loss of an unfathomable number of innocent lives. It’s all just very sad/saddening.

    • JustJessetr on August 24, 2013, 9:32 am

      Q: “Hiroshima and Nagasaki were the consequence of Japanese aggression. You reap what you sow.”…

      R: “Auschwitz and Buchenwald were the consequences of World Jewry aggression [declaring war on Germany in 1933]. You reap what you sow…”

      The first one is at least debatable. The second is too stupid to even contemplate arguing.

  14. Krauss on August 23, 2013, 7:08 pm

    He reminds me of that guy who was in charge of the settlements in Israel concern-trolling about South African apartheid, while he was advancing his own apartheid in the backyard.

    Same is true with this Seaman character. So delusional and moronic.
    Kinda like hophmi.

  15. RoHa on August 23, 2013, 10:53 pm

    O.K. Clearly he believes in collective punishment.

    Do the Israelis acknowledge that the Japanese killed more Chinese than the Nazis killed Jews?

  16. Ecru on August 24, 2013, 10:41 am

    I suppose we should just be grateful he’s kept his views on the commemoration of Roma dead or the Rape of Nanking to himself. But we all know that even mentioning other things that happened in WWII (or other genocides throughout history) is tantamount to “holocaust denial” and hence “antisemitic.”

  17. hungrydave on August 24, 2013, 9:30 pm

    It’s an interesting situation. I read a piece the other day about the republicans and the tea party. It was making the case that the republicans built up the tea party and allowed it to flourish so they could use it as a tool to create pressure, but now the dog’s off the leash and won’t be reined in.
    I think there’s a similar thing going on in Israel. That opportunist, liar and demagogue Netanyahu has tried to play the nationalists. He’s encouraged a situation where racism, hate, incitement and violence are encouraged, but didn’t manage to get over the message that you have to pretend otherwise in polite society. They’re not all as wiley as Netanyahu and don’t get the need to appease the rest of the world. These lunatics just want to scream “Israel is all ours and the arabs must die”, they don’t want to play coy with the two state solution sham or embrace even hollow paper-machete idols of justice or equality. The poor babies are all confused, they’ve been encouraged to embrace ethno-superiority by every aspect of the state and Likud, then they see Netanyahu doing his oscar winning I-support-the-two-state-solution nonsense and suddenly their boy Bibi’s not right wing enough for them anymore. I actually prefer these rabid drooling racists like Simon Gapso, Seaman and Bennet to slimy manipulators like Netanyahu. They’re just spoilt children who don’t know how to play the game and soon they’ll be running the show which is very bad news for the liberal zionists in the US, which in turn is good news for justice, democracy and anyone wanting people to have informed choices.

  18. Alcibiades on August 25, 2013, 8:36 am

    Frankly, I wonder whether this whole business was choreographed. Seaman comes off as a loose cannon who “just does this kind of stuff”. The Israeli government apologizes to Japan. And no one will think any more about it. But why would Seaman even care enough to make the remark in the first place? It has no bearing on anything that’s really important to him.

    On the other hand, China is clearly a concern for Israel: Big, powerful and getting moreso, and not susceptible to the usual pressures used on western countries. Is Seaman being “groomed” as a “friend of China”? Is his outburst designed to appeal to the Chinese and perhaps make him a “sympathetic” interlocutor with China at some point? All his other rants have been closely tied to (perceived) Israeli interests. I suspect that ultimately this episode has little to do with Japan and everything to do with a concerted attempt to build a stronger relationship with China. Seaman’s future career progression and statements bear watching.

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