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Israel calls upon Germany to defund organizations showing a critical perspective of Israel

Opinion
on 44 Comments

Last week, the German newspaper Die Tageszeitung reported that Israel asked German Chancellor Angela Merkel to stop funding the Jewish Museum in Berlin, among other institutions (cited in Haaretz).

The reason behind the demand was the museum’s exhibition on Jerusalem, which “presents a Muslim-Palestinian perspective of the city,” the report said.

The letter was sent directly to the chancellor’s bureau and not through the Israeli embassy, where Merkel was also asked to defund other organizations that Israel claimed were anti-Israeli. These included the Berlin International Film Festival, pro-Palestinian Christian organizations, and the Israeli site +972 Magazine, which receives funding from the Heinrich Böll Foundation.

The Israeli paper Yediot Aharonot picked this up and asked the Israeli government for a response. Here it is:

“The prime minister raised the issue of defunding Palestinian and Israeli groups and non-governmental organizations that depict Israel Defense Forces as war criminals, support Palestinian terrorism and call for boycott of the State of Israel. Israel will continue fighting these organizations”

This contains an obvious indirect reference to the military whistleblower organization Breaking the Silence.

Last year, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu snubbed the German Foreign Minister Sigmar Gabriel who was on visit, as Gabriel was planning to meet with Breaking the Silence as well as the human rights monitoring group B’tselem. Netanyahu had issued an ultimatum to Gabriel to cancel meetings with both organizations, which Gabriel refused to do. 

Gabriel responded by saying that it would be “regrettable” if the meeting with Netanyahu were cancelled, and reflected that it would be “inconceivable” for himself to cancel a meeting with Netanyahu if the latter chose to meet figures critical of the German government. “You never get the full picture of any state in the world if you just meet with figures in government ministries,” Gabriel told the German TV channel ZDF.

Netanyahu then abruptly cancelled the planned meeting with Gabriel, his office stating:

“Netanyahu’s policy is not to meet foreign visitors who, on diplomatic trips to Israel, meet with groups that slander IDF [Israel Defence Forces] soldiers as war criminals. Diplomats are welcome to meet with representatives of civil society but Prime Minister Netanyahu will not meet with those who lend legitimacy to organisations that call for the criminalisation of Israeli soldiers. Our relations with Germany are very important and they will not be affected by this.”

That which is rightly inconceivable for the German Foreign Minister, is completely natural for Israel. It is not worried about enacting totalitarian censorship and putting the German liberalism ‘in place’. Because Israel has a ‘special relationship’ with Germany. It is ‘special’ in an abusive sense – as Israel actively exploits Holocaust guilt.

Three years ago, in an off-the-record comment to journalists, Israeli Berlin embassy spokeswoman Adi Farjon said that Israel had no interest in full normalization of relations with Germany, and that it was an Israeli interest to maintain German guilt feelings, because without them, Israel would be “just another country as far as they’re concerned.”

“We were all in shock,” said a female journalist present at the briefing, which was also attended by the Israeli ambassador himself, Yakov Hadas-Handelsman.

“It was so awkward”, commented another Israeli journalist.

“We couldn’t believe our ears. We’re sitting there eating peanuts, and behind the spokeswoman there are two German women sitting there who don’t understand a word of Hebrew – and the embassy staff is telling us they’re working to preserve the German guilt feelings and that Israel has no interest in normalization of relations between the two countries.”

So that’s what “special relationship’ means. It means that Israel can snub German politicians, act out of protocol and call for political censorship from top to top, and the Germans need to take it lying down, because there’s the Holocaust.

Jonathan Ofir

Israeli musician, conductor and blogger / writer based in Denmark.

Other posts by .


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44 Responses

  1. amigo on December 17, 2018, 2:55 pm

    Can you imagine just what a successful wealthy nation Israel would be if it,s leaders /Jewish citizens would return to it,s self declared Borders of 1947 and get out of Occupied Palestine/Occupied Syrian Heights and quit interfering in the internal affairs of dozens of Sovereign Nations , buying off their pols and fomenting wars in the ME against it,s neighbours.

    How does one begin to put a number on how much Israel spends picking fights with a large % of the world and all in an effort to keep alive , what is to all intents and purposes a DOA Project.

    Is it any surprise that according to B.B.C polls over the last 5 to 10 years ,Israel has been in the top three of the most disliked and least trusted nations on Earth.

    Go figure.

    • mondonut on December 17, 2018, 8:22 pm

      @amigo, …self declared Borders of 1947

      More patently false historical revisionism. Present day Israel did not even exist until 1948, so obviously they had no “self declared” borders in 1947.

      • Jonathan Ofir on December 18, 2018, 1:50 am

        Mondonut, Amigo is obviously referring to the the letter by Jewish Agency agent Eliahu Sasson to President Truman on the day of the Declaration of Independence stating that “the state of Israel has been proclaimed as an independent republic within the frontiers approved by the General Assembly of the United Nations in its resolution of November 29th, 1947”.

        But I’m sure you knew that already.

      • Paranam Kid on December 18, 2018, 8:57 am

        @Jonathan Ofir: FYI, the UNGA did NOT approve any frontiers, NOR did it approve the creation of Israel. The resolution recommended partition of Palestine into a Jewish and Arab part, 55%-45% respectively. The Arabs did not agree, but despite their being a majority, Israel went ahead regardless with the approval of the US and UK. So, effectively Israel was creted fraudulently.

      • johneill on December 18, 2018, 9:14 am

        paranam, you should know by now: force creates its own legitimacy.

      • amigo on December 18, 2018, 9:47 am

        “More patently false historical revisionism. ” mondonutter.

        zzzzzzzzzz.

        I take it you agree with the other points I raised in my post.

      • Misterioso on December 18, 2018, 9:59 am

        @mondonut

        A reminder: The entity known as “Israel” has yet to officially declare its borders and have them agreed to as such by the international community.

      • mondonut on December 18, 2018, 10:14 am

        @Jonathan Ofir, Amigo is obviously referring to the the letter by …

        No, what I obviously know is what he said. Nonetheless the correspondence to Truman did not constitute a declaration of borders, nor did Israel’s Declaration of Independence declare borders. What the letter obviously was referring to was the 14th paragraph of the Declaration,

        “THE STATE OF ISRAEL is prepared to cooperate with the agencies and representatives of the United Nations in implementing the resolution of the General Assembly of the 29th November, 1947”

        Which became a moot point as that resolution was turned down by the Arabs and never implemented.

      • mondonut on December 18, 2018, 10:18 am

        @Misterioso, The entity known as “Israel” has yet to officially declare its borders and have them agreed to as such by the international community.

        Nonsense. It has declared borders with each and every adjacent country. It has declared and undisputed borders with Egypt and Jordan. It has declared and disputed borders with Lebanon and Syria.

        And borders are not agreed to by the “international community”, they are agreed to by states that share those borders.

      • amigo on December 18, 2018, 10:58 am

        “But I’m sure you knew that already.” Johnathan Ofir.

        Of course he does but he resorts to the only response left to zionists—splitting hairs.

        Btw, thanks for the intervention.

      • Paranam Kid on December 18, 2018, 11:31 am

        @johnneil: absolutely right. I just want to set Jonathan on his mis-statement of facts.

      • mondonut on December 18, 2018, 11:47 am

        @amigo he resorts to the only response left to zionists—splitting hairs.

        Except that both your original statement and Ofir’s reinterpretation are incorrect. Splitting of hairs in unnecessary.

    • Misterioso on December 18, 2018, 10:17 am

      @amigo, etal

      The root cause of the ongoing horrors in historic Palestine and to a large extent in adjoining Arab countries is that the entity known as “Israel” was founded by thieves, thugs, liars, murderers and poseurs of foreign origin through overwhelming military might, several massacres, rape and mass dispossession/expulsion of the indigenous Christian and Muslim Arab Palestinian inhabitants who including their ancestors, have lived there continuously for about 15,000 years.

      In short, Jewish Zionists had the same right to Palestine as Irish Catholics and Mexican atheists, i.e., none whatsoever!!

    • Misterioso on December 18, 2018, 12:36 pm

      @amigo, etal

      https://www.haaretz.com/israel-news/facebook-temporarily-bans-yair-netanyahu-1.6748097

      Like father, like son:

      “Netanyahu’s son says he’d ‘prefer’ if ‘all the Muslims leave the land of Israel’

      Haaretz, Dec. 16/18

      “Facebook has blocked Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s son Yair for 24 hours after he wrote a post criticizing the social media platform as ‘thought police’ and sharing previously banned content.

      “Yair Netanyahu blasted the website on Sunday for removing an earlier post in which he called for ‘avenging the deaths’ of two Israeli soldiers killed last week by Palestinian gunmen and calling for the expulsion of Palestinians. He shared a screenshot of the earlier post in violation of Facebook’s community rules.

      “Facebook deleted a post by Netanyahu last week in which he said he would ‘prefer’ if ‘All the Muslims leave the land of Israel.’

      “Netanyahu’s son has drawn media criticism for crude social media posts and a life of excess at public expense.

      “Netanyahu called left-wing organizations and politicians ‘traitors’ in a Facebook post last Monday. The post also chided members of the Israeli media and people who sympathized with Palestinians for acting against ‘Jewish interests.’

      “Netanyahu wrote that ‘Now finally this word is allowed, I’ll say what everyone in the country knows. Left-wing NGOs funded by foreign and hostile governments, the politicians on the left and media people who always side with the enemy and always against Jewish interests, whose hearts are hardened against victims of terror, settlers or victims of infiltrators, and on the other hand whose hearts are full of compassion for every Arab rioter wounded on the Gaza border – they are the traitors!’

      “In 2017, Netanyahu posted a meme, captioned ‘the food chain,’ featuring a photo of George Soros dangling the world in front of a reptilian creature, who dangles an alchemy symbol in front of a caricature of a figure reminiscent of the anti-Semitic ‘happy merchant’ image.

      “At the time neo-Nazi publisher of the “Daily Stormer,” Andrew Anglin, praised Netanyahu and thanked him for his contribution to anti-Semitism.”

    • Marnie on December 20, 2018, 11:39 pm

      israel behaves like an overindulged child, taking without thoughts giving unless its a photop kind of thing and then done with lots of noise; making promises only to get something, then forgetting the promise and just taking; lying about virtually anything and everything as policy; lashing out and making threats to anyone who disagrees or has the temerity to criticize a.n.y.t.h.i.n.g. To make demands on a foreign government whom it has had a ‘special’ relationship based on guilt and nothing else is disgusting. The whoremongering is breathtaking, but then there’s a new pimp on the block who’s had a lifetime of doing just that and who now has pulled out of Syria, and probably the only time he’s pulled out of anything. Bravo to Sigmar Gabriel.

      What’s taking so long for other countries to follow suit? The u.s. is isolating itself among the nations and it will be years for the world to get over the tRUMP effect. I doubt the u.s. will ever regain the status it had and that’s probably a good thing because it has done a lot of damage in it’s brief tenure as master of the universe. Maybe other nations will deal with israel the way they would have were it not for u.s. interference.

  2. Rashers2 on December 18, 2018, 3:23 pm

    Mention of a particular entity in Jonathan Ofir’s article underlines the total disconnect between a genuine democracy and Mileikowsky and his fellow Zio-paths. Mileikowsky has demanded that the German Chancellor prevent an independent organisation (albeit affiliated to a political party, the Green Party) – the Heinrich Böll Foundation – from funding the pro-Palestinian news site +972. What planet does he inhabit? Unless it is committing or financing crimes, neither Frau Merkel nor any member of her government may dictate where an independent educational and cultural foundation inspired by a successful, left-leaning, anti-Nazi man of letters spends or doesn’t spend its money!
    In a Fascist country such as Israel is rapidly becoming, of course, political interference in private freedoms is entirely possible and unremarkable. Making such a preposterous and impossible demand of a Western leader such as Frau Merkel, seemingly without any understanding of its preposterousness and impossibility, would be laughable if the motivation, which is to exploit collective guilt and stifle legitimate criticism of Israel, weren’t so egregious.

  3. Kay24 on December 18, 2018, 5:11 pm

    This will be interesting to see. Will Germany once again be reminded of the Holocaust, and cave in to Israel’s demands?

    • Paranam Kid on December 19, 2018, 9:04 am

      @Kay24:

      A spokeswoman for the Israeli embassy in Berlin, Adi Farjon, recently told Israeli journalists it was in the country’s interest to maintain German guilt about the Holocaust, and that it isn’t seeking full normalization of relations between the governments.
      A female journalist present at the closed briefing: “The spokeswoman clearly said it was an Israeli interest to maintain German guilt feelings. She even said that without them, we’d be just another country as far as they’re concerned.” Others present at the event confirmed the journalist’s account.

      Source: https://www.haaretz.com/israel-news/.premium-1.662962

      This was in 2015, 67 years after the creation of Israel, no reason to believe it is any different now.

  4. Shingo on December 19, 2018, 1:38 pm

    Which became a moot point as that resolution was turned down by the Arabs and never implemented.

    Mot loot at all. Rabbi Silver of the Jewish Agency, declared that they considered the resolution binding, regardless of whether the Arabs accepted it.

    What’s more, the resolution is cited as the basis for Israel’s legitimacy. So if you want to throw out the resolution, you might want to agree Israel’s legitimacy is also non existent

  5. Paranam Kid on December 20, 2018, 6:46 am

    @Shingo: indeed it is non-existent, what with Apartheid enshrined in law and a stealth genocide going on.

  6. Citizen on December 21, 2018, 5:34 am

    If memory serves, didn’t UN acceptance of Israel as a nation among the nations of the world contain a condition subsequent clause requiring Israel to immediately allow home the 750,000 non-Jews terrorized from their homeland?

    • Jon66 on December 21, 2018, 9:52 am

      No

    • mondonut on December 21, 2018, 9:58 am

      @Citizen, requiring Israel to immediately allow home the 750,000 non-Jews….

      UNGA 273 had no such clause.

      • Citizen on December 21, 2018, 11:05 am

        After the assassination of Bernadotte by members of the Zionist Lehi organization 3 months before Resolution 194 was passed, he was poignantly commemorated for his peacemaking efforts in said resolution’s Article 1. Israel went on to reject UN demands, even though the terms of its subsequent admission to UN membership in 1949 required adherence to UN resolutions, including 194 of December 1948.

      • Jon66 on December 21, 2018, 4:48 pm

        Citizen
        I would love to see the documents that state that Israel is under these requirements.

      • mondonut on December 21, 2018, 5:44 pm

        @Citizen, admission to UN membership in 1949 required adherence to UN resolutions

        History lesson aside, the only relevant documents to Israel admittance to the UN were UNGA 273 and UN Document A/818. Neither of which include the terms and requirements you are mistakenly quoting.

      • Talkback on January 5, 2019, 6:30 pm

        Jon66: “Citizen
        I would love to see the documents that state that Israel is under these requirements.”

        Declaration of Human Rights, article 13 (2)
        International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights, article 12(4).
        Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Racial Discrimination, article 5d(ii).

        All ratified by Israel.

        But I bet that mondonut and you think that a state has the right to expell people and/or keep them expelled, if it the state is Jewish.

      • Jon66 on January 5, 2019, 11:20 pm

        Talk,
        “If memory serves, didn’t UN acceptance of Israel as a nation among the nations of the world contain a condition subsequent clause requiring Israel to immediately allow home the 750,000 non-Jews terrorized from their homeland?”
        Citizen says that Israel was required in 1949 to allow 750,000 refugees to enter. You cite as support three documents . Two of the three did not exist until 1966 and 1979. How could Israel be required in 1949 to accept documents which did not exist at the time.

      • mondonut on January 6, 2019, 1:40 am

        @Talkback, But I bet that mondonut and you think that a state has the right to expell people and/or keep them expelled, if it the state is Jewish.

        Your claim was that UNGA 273 bound Israel to accept the Palestinian Right of Return, but I see that you are pivoting away from that nonsense.

        I will assume that your list of conventions and treaties is supposed to do the same, demonstrate that Israel is bound to the RoR. Please explain how anything of what you cite is retroactive to 1948.

      • Talkback on January 6, 2019, 9:10 am

        Jon66: “How could Israel be required in 1949 to accept documents which did not exist at the time.”

        The Declaration of Human rights allready existed exactly one day before resolution 194 in December 1948. And either you ratify a document and accept its principles or you don’t.

        And I still bet that mondonut and you think that a state has the right to expell people and/or keep them expelled, if the state is Jewish.

      • Talkback on January 6, 2019, 10:28 am

        Addendum

        The UN Charter IS binding. Have a guess what “declaration” was explicitly adopted for the purpose of defining the charter’s meaning of the words “human rights” and “fundamental freedoms” even before Israel became a UN member state?

      • mondonut on January 6, 2019, 2:49 pm

        @Talkback , The UN Charter IS binding.

        But the Universal Declaration of Human Rights in not. And the UN Charter does not provide a Right of Return nor did it obligate Israel to implement UNGA 194.

      • Talkback on January 6, 2019, 5:48 pm

        mondonut: “But the Universal Declaration of Human Rights in not. And the UN Charter does not provide a Right of Return nor did it obligate Israel to implement UNGA 194.”

        You didn’t understand the point. The “Universal Declaration of Human Rights” defines what “human rights” means in a charter which is binding.

        With resolution 194 and the countless reaffirmations of this right in the resolutions that followed and which called it an “inalienable right” it became customary law law.

        And Israel also ratified the “International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights” and “Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Racial Discrimination,”

        But have it your way. According to your reasoning every country had and still has the right to expell Jews and/or keep them expelled. That’s the Zionist understanding of human rights and international (customary) law, including the Marten’s clause. You have come a long way whitewashing Nazi crimes, mondonut.

      • mondonut on January 6, 2019, 8:02 pm

        @Talkback, You didn’t understand the point.

        I understood your point completely. In the absence of anything real to support your contentions you are floundering around with inventions, goalpost moving and irrelevant treaties and conventions.

        – Israel was not bound to implement UNGA 194 by its admittance to the UN.
        – The UN Charter is the UN Charter. Full Stop. It is not the Charter plus the UDHR.
        – UNGA 194 is not customary law (ridiculous). Non-binding GA resolutions do not become law simply by repeating them.
        – The ICCPR and the Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Racial Discrimination are not retroactive.

        And this has nothing to do with Jews, it is simply the truth. But your invoking of Nazis when you have nothing else is right on schedule.

      • RoHa on January 6, 2019, 8:42 pm

        Interesting that Zionists nearly always deal with the issue by denying that there are any binding UN resolutions.

        The idea that Israel has a moral obligation to allow the return of the refugees does not get discussed. This supports my contention that Zionists simply do not understand morality.

      • echinococcus on January 7, 2019, 12:28 am

        Talkback

        “According to your reasoning every country had and still has the right to expell Jews and/or keep them expelled. That’s the Zionist understanding of human rights and international (customary) law…”

        You say this as if the Zionists would disagree. Of course their essential request from all governments is that they expel the Jews.
        Also, what’s the idea of discussing human rights with a Zionist? Better luck with a crocodile.

      • Talkback on January 7, 2019, 9:19 am

        mondonut: “– The UN Charter is the UN Charter. Full Stop. It is not the Charter plus the UDHR.”

        Again, nobody said that. The UDHR defined the term “human rights” in the UN Charter.

        mondonut: “– UNGA 194 is not customary law (ridiculous). Non-binding GA resolutions do not become law simply by repeating them.”

        Of course they do. That is exactly why somethng is called “custom”. It is the “custom” view in the international arena.
        “However the term can also apply to areas of international law where certain standards have been nearly [!] universal in their acceptance as correct bases of action.”
        https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Custom_(law)

        This is obviously the case. The right of return is a standard that is (nearly) universally accepted as a correct base of action. It is totally accepted as a correct base of action in the UNHCR.

        “Customary international law is an aspect of international law involving the principle of custom. Along with general principles of law and treaties, custom is considered by the International Court of Justice, jurists, the United Nations, and its member states to be among the primary sources of international law. … The International Court of Justice Statute defines customary international law in Article 38(1)(b) as “a general practice accepted as law.”[2] This is generally determined through two factors: the general practice of states and what states have accepted as law.”
        https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Customary_international_law

        It is has become custom for the members of the General Assembly to (nearly) universally” reaffirm (IIRC almost annualy) that the Palestinian’s right to return is an inalienable right for seven decaded. That is the difference between a ruling that is not “legally binding” and a ruling that has become “custom”. And of course it means, that Israel has NO right, neither encoded nor as customary law to violate this rights and deny it to Palestinians. It is a crime, a crime against humanity.

        mondonut: “– The ICCPR and the Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Racial Discrimination are not retroactive.”

        What’s the difference? Its rule regarding the right to return applies to present refugees. Those who acquired a refugee status. Either under UNRWA or under UNHCR. Both apply the principle of transfering to status to descendants. And in the case of the UNHCR even to ascendents. This principle is called “family unification” and is worldwide the standard in prolonged refugee situations which span over generations.

        And again, the RIGHT [!] of return is enshrined in international law: The Crime of Apartheid for example lists the violation of this RIGHT under inhumane actions that are applied to ensure the domination of one group over another.

        Israel is violating this human right. And it is not only inhumane, but absolutely ridiculous to claim that the UN member state Israel is country which is not obligated to uphold or restore human rights, Especially not if it has ratified declarations and treaties which include this right.

        By the way, which treaty, convention, resolution or advisory opinion are’t irrelevant to a Zionist? You are basically arguing that Israel only understands the language of violence and admitting that it isn’t a peace loving state and should be expelled from the United Nations.

      • Talkback on January 7, 2019, 9:19 am

        echi: “Also, what’s the idea of discussing human rights with a Zionist?”

        Oh, I’m not discussing with them, I’m perfecting to expose their neo-nazi and Apartheid mentality of some of them and particular in the case of mondonut who doesn’t even contest the idea that every country has right to violate the human rights of Jews. Sometimes I wonder, if we are even dealing with Zionists and not with crypto-Nazis who whitewash Nazi crimes shilelding themselves with antisemitism accusations. I definetly know of one neo-Nazi who was a staunch supporter of Israel and its racial and violent policies.

      • Talkback on January 7, 2019, 9:54 am

        Roha: “Interesting that Zionists nearly always deal with the issue by denying that there are any binding UN resolutions. The idea that Israel has a moral obligation to allow the return of the refugees does not get discussed. This supports my contention that Zionists simply do not understand morality.”

        Indeed. Even narcissists do, but psychopaths don’t. Imagine Hitler would have argued that there wasn’t a Genocide Convention before 1945 and therefore he wasn’t obliged to abstain from commiting genocide against Jews. That’s mondonut’s reasoning.

  7. Citizen on December 21, 2018, 5:40 am

    Germany Poll of 2009: 60% thought the country no longer had a special duty towards the Jewish state. https://p.dw.com/p/GYKX?maca=en-Twitter-sharing Germans Divided on Feelings Towards Israel, Poll Shows

  8. Citizen on December 21, 2018, 5:56 am

    Leipzig Authoritarianism Study 2018: Nearly one in three Germans support xenophobic views http://www.idw-online.de/-CsPTBA

  9. Citizen on December 21, 2018, 5:58 am

    Germany, 2018: Nearly 30 percent of Germans believe Jews use ‘dirty tricks’ https://www.jns.org/nearly-30-of-germans-believe-jews-use-dirty-tricks-poll-finds/ via @JNS_org

  10. Citizen on December 21, 2018, 6:33 am

    Question for Trump & his MAGA friends: Why are Palestinians paying for Germany’s sins? https://electronicintifada.net/content/why-are-palestinians-paying-germanys-sins/11167

  11. Vera Gottlieb on December 22, 2018, 3:33 pm

    Will the day ever come…will I live long enough to see the day when israel admits to all the terror it has submitted Palestinians to? Will I? It is no wonder anti-Semitism is on the rise. I am turning anti Zionist…

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