Latest news


Update – 14 July 2010

Posted by Emily Chrapot on 14 July 2010 at 2:32pm:

Dear All,

The Fairfax organisation whose flagship newspapers are the Melbourne Age and the Sydney Morning Herald are so mired in the flawed narrative of their employee activist/analyst/commentators that they have lost the capacity to objectively deal with the Gaza Flotilla incident of late May in which their own reporter played an integral part.

This is clear from today’s two-pronged attack on Israel per medium of the Age editorial entitled ‘Flotilla inquiry doesn’t hold water’ and an extraordinarily poorly constructed propaganda piece by Paul McGeough entitled ‘Flotilla inquiries fail to consider culpability of Israeli government’.

McGeough sailed with some of the activists on the flotilla but not on the same ship as the problematic types who, the evidence clearly shows, set out to confront by violent resistance any attempt to prevent the flotilla from breaching Israel’s blockade. His writing more and more resembles active advocacy on their behalf.  

Both pieces seek to whitewash the findings of Israel’s military inquiry into the incident of 31 May 2010 and both display an incredible lack of understanding of the purpose of the enquiry. Additionally, they display a complete refusal to accept that there is a narrative of the events which differs to that which the Age and its reporters have been pushing. The Age’s version happens to coincide with the version of the gang of cutthroat militants who embedded themselves in the flotilla with mischief and mayhem in mind.

It’s a narrative that’s short on verifiable facts and one that flies in the face of a large body of real evidence which Israel’s detractors would like to sweep under the carpet (and in the case of Fairfax and its resident flotilla spin doctor are working hard to keep under cover). For their benefit, here is a sample of the body of evidence ignored or dismissed:-

I have put the information into sub-categories, for your convenience.

Israeli Humanitarian Aid into Gaza before the Flotilla Incident:

• A report of the Humanitarian Aid being delivered to Gaza from Israel
• A report putting this aid into perspective
• Video: Israel unloads aid from the flotillas and transfers it to Gaza
• Why the “aid” delivered by the flotilla in question was not considered humanitarian aid
• Israel’s new policy on Gaza – completely outlined with reasons why certain items are banned
The organisation behind the Mavi Marmara was the IHH. Age reports have routinely ignored who the IHH are and what they stand for, instead continually referring to them as “activists” and “protestors”. 
• The IHH is a militant Islamist movement with a record of supporting terrorism
• Analysis – IHH Preparations for a violent confrontation with IDF soldiers aboard the Turkish Ship Mavi Marmara: Initial conclusions from questioning passengers and examining equipment on board the ships
• Additional evidence of the preparations of the Hard Core of IHH operatives for the confrontation with the IDF
• Several Flotilla Passengers are active terror operatives linked to Al-Qaeda, Hamas and other organisations
• IHH is being banned elsewhere in the world – Germany bans IHH for Hamas links 

Video evidence of the violence that the IDF was met with:

• Video of the cache of weapons including knives, slingshots, rocks, smoke bombs, metal rods, improvised sharp metal objects, sticks and clubs, 5kg hammers and firebombs
• Close up video of “peace activists” attacking the metal batons
• Video taken by the IDF showing passengers of the Mavi Marmara violently attacking IDF officers trying to board the ship
• Video of the radio exchange between the soldiers on their way to the bridge and the IDF ship. The soldiers are reporting their encounter with live fire and serious violence.
• Video of Israeli Navy officer describing the violent mob aboard the Mavi Marmara
• Video of the Mavi Marmara passengers attacking the IDF before the soldiers boarded the ship
• Video of the flotilla rioters as they prepared rods, slingshots, broken bottles and metal objects to attack IDF soldiers
• Video of Israeli naval officers addressing the ship 
• Photographs published in the Turkish media taken by IHH operatives in order to embarrass Israel of injured Israeli soldiers.

And I haven’t started on Hamas and its evil racist covenant which is routinely ignored in Fairfax publications. It is Hamas (and not the Palestinian or the Gazan people) which is the beneficiary of these attacks on Israel.

This brings me to the piece in today’s Sydney Morning Herald entitled ‘Flotilla inquiries fail to consider culpability of Israeli government’.

For those playing at home, Paul McGeough has been exposed before on these very pages – to read more, click here. His piece in today’s paper is a reminder to all that if he becomes the new Middle East Correspondent for the Age, as the rumours are suggesting, the Age will enter a new universe of reporting, lacking in balance, objectivity and credibility.

McGeough opens by informing us that the ‘Israeli spin machine… has painted the Turkish non-government organisation IHH in the darkest possible terms.’ He declares that any evidence that the Israelis have on the IHH is the result of the ‘a lot of ominous dots to join’. But it’s McGeough who is attempting to join a lot of ominous lines himself by continually ignoring the evidence put forward above and repeatedly attempted to paint the operatives on board as nothing more than “troublemakers”. This is nothing more than a poor attempt to wriggle out of the awkward situation he created in his early reports which totally ignored the IHH and its violence even as Turkish newspapers were publishing photographs which contradicted the very same version he had been pushing.

It seems that it would be easier for McGeough to keep trotting out the same rubbery narrative except for the fact that there is so much evidence of these “troublemakers” waiting for the Israelis with clubs, chains and metal slingshots. As much as I try to stretch the memory, I simply cannot recall the last time an innocent boy scout threw an unconscious soldier over the bows of a ship.

And that is exactly where the truth had gone as far as Fairfax and this sordid flotilla incident – dumped over the bows of the ship.

Best wishes,