Daesh, Hamas, Fatah… if not Hezbollah… What do they have in common? They are all fascists

Cometh the hour, cometh the man, and it was the UK parliamentarian Hilary Benn who in December 2015 at last spelt out the moral responsibility to combat fascism in the Middle East. Benn referred to homosexuals being thrown from buildings, the destruction of cultural heritage, mass graves, sex slavery, and murder. He described how our values, tolerance, decency and democracy were held in contempt. Daesh*, he said, are fascists, and fascists must be fought.

While his words gave us focus on Daesh they can equally help us focus on the fascism of the Palestinian leaderships, militant groups, and among large swathes of the general population of the various Palestines (i.e. Hamas-Gaza-Palestine; Fatah-West-Bank-Palestine; and, King-Abdullah-Jordan-Palestine). Indeed, in throwing homosexuals from buildings, Daesh was copying the actions of Hamas in Gaza when they dispatched large numbers of opponents from tall buildings in the entity in the first few days after its election victory there.

The modern State of Israel has been fighting the fascism of Palestinian leaderships for decade after decade.

Fascism lives among elites and among the general population. Their fascism is destructive, and lives in the media, in mosques and in religious study-centres (madrassas). It creates a narrative that refers to the Shoah (the Holocaust) and to how 6,000,000 dead is an exaggeration if not a hoax (the gist of the doctoral thesis written by Mahmoud Abbas in Russia during the Soviet era).

The figure of Adolf Hitler figures large in the modern Palestinian narrative. They boast that they are sorry that Hitler didn’t finish his task, and how they will. All of this is woven into a distorted Palestinian world view and pseudo-historical narrative. In this revised narrative, Jewish presence never existed in the region.

Admiring references to Hitler’s Third Reich can be found in Muslim media, book-shops, and the internet right across the Arab world. Indeed, that Hitler found a key ally in the Holy Land is a historical truth. This ally was the Grand Mufti of Jerusalem, Muhammad Amin al-Husseini – the man spotlighted by Benjamin Netanyahu earlier this year.

The Grand Mufti had been glorified by the German press as ‘the fuhrer of the Middle East’ when he visited Berlin in 1941. Al-Husseini organised a Muslim SS Battalion that slaughtered 90% of Bosnia’s Jews and made broadcasts to the Middle East urging Muslims to honour Allah by implementing their own Final Solution. Yasser Arafat, the founder of the PLO (you know… the great Palestinian… born in Egypt), was the Grand Mufti’s nephew and admirer.

The leaderships of the various ‘Palestines’ of Gaza and the West Bank are locked into a struggle for control over their peoples, and while they agree on very little they each fly the fascist flag, so to speak. As described above, the President in the Fatah-West-Bank-Palestine, Mahmoud Abbas, completed his doctoral dissertation in Russia (at the Institute of Oriental Studies of the Russian Academy of Sciences) and published it in 1984 under the title, ‘The Other Side: the Secret Relationship Between Nazism and Zionism’. He claimed that 6,000,000 Jewish deaths at the hands of the Nazis is ‘a gross exaggeration’.

Then there is Hamas…  Hamas is an offshoot of the Egyptian Muslim Brotherhood, founded in 1928 by schoolteacher Hassan al-Banna, who modelled his organisation on Mussolini’s bully-boys and Hitler’s brown-shirts. The Hamas founder, Sheikh Ahmed Yassin, an admirer of Hitler, was also inspired by Izz al-Din al-Kassam whose followers killed Jews during the 1936-1939 Uprising – during the British period – and then joined the Grand Mufti in providing the Nazi-Germans with Middle Eastern operatives during World War II. Some of today’s militants in Gaza name their rocketry after al-Kassam – the Kassam or Qassam missiles.

Indeed, the Hamas founding charter (1988) relies heavily on the distortions and untruths of the proven hoax called the ‘Protocols of the Elders of Zion’. It is a charter that could have been written by Adolf Hitler, Joseph Goebbels, and any number of Austrian, Polish or Russian anti-Semites.

Unfortunately, there is never any real analysis of Palestinian society or its fascist ideologies, or any profiles of armed fascist Palestinian groups, or investigations into the Palestinian government (Mahmoud Abbas is still President in West-Bank-Palestine 6-years after the end of his term, 2005-2009… and since the Hamas election victory in Gaza in 2006 there has been no other election victory celebration there).

One person who has offered analysis of the Hamas leadership in Gaza is Suha Arafat. Last November (2014), on the tenth anniversary of her husband’s death, she expressed dismay at Hamas, and how the terror group had attacked Fatah leaders and buildings after its takeover of the Gaza Strip. Further, she said that Hamas was ruining the futures of Gaza youth, and committing ‘genocide’ upon its own people. The Hamas-generation has grown up with violence, without education, and with emigration as their only hope.

Other analysis has come from Bassem Eid, the founder and former director of the Jerusalem-based Palestinian Human Rights Monitoring Group (PHRMG). Eid is an advocate for peace with Israel, and a critic of terrorism and is part of the ‘Stop the Boycott’ movement.

Eid also reminds us of the statistics of the suffering brought upon Gaza-Palestine by Hamas and other terror groups and their affiliated Rocket Brigades: how some 5 million tons of rubble remains in Gaza; how 200,000 workers have lost their means of employment; how 80% of the Gazan people are surviving on welfare; how 40% of Gazans are living below poverty lines; and, how 22,000 Gazans are homeless.

He reminds us too how none of this is Israel’s fault and how the responsibility for the fate of Gaza-Palestine lies with its government – Hamas… not Israel.

We should all be reminded that Daesh, Hamas, Fatah, if not Hezbollah too, all have something in common. They are all fascists. Israel knows this, we should too.

*Daesh…: An acronym for the Arabic phrase al-Dawla al-Islamiya al-Iraq al-Sham (Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant) or ISIS or ISIL. The word ‘Daesh’ is preferred by many because it is similar to the Arabic words ‘Daes’, ‘one who crushes something underfoot’ and ‘Dahes’, translated as ‘one who sows discord’.



Ooops ! – Andrew Murray and Bill Mair – one accused of lying, another caught spreading lies!!!



Widely described as a ‘dad’ of two in the press reports and blog-posts at the time – as if anyone would actually care about his parental responsibilities – and also as a ‘community campaigner’, Andrew Murray, Chair of the Friends of Palestine group in the SNP (Scottish National Party), was recently barred from entering Israel. He had been part of an advance party for a delegation of Scottish MPs due to visit Israel and the Palestinian territories, but was detained for more than 24 hours and placed in a cell.

Andrew Murray - activist for Palestine.
Andrew Murray – activist for Palestine.

The Israeli Interior Ministry said that Murray had lied about his reason for travelling to Israel by saying that he was a tourist. The fact was that, after border control checks were carried out, he was found to have come to the region for a conference. He had lied to border control.


What Murray hadn’t realised, clearly, was that security personnel worth their salt – anywhere – are trained to react to non-verbal reactions. When you evade answering questions put to you by security, or tell open lies, or not tell the whole truth, you are setting yourself up for further questioning. When you enter Israel and are not open with the security services and border control personnel there, you are likely to be interrogated until they can determine what it is you are hiding and if you are a threat to the security of other tourists, and Israelis.


Murray himself claimed that he did not lie in response to any of the questions asked – in other words he had been evasive and possibly obtuse (Just saying… tho’ none of us were there… only Murray and his questioners). He said that he had been detained and barred entry to Israel and thus to Palestine because it was quite obvious that he ‘was a Palestinian activist’. He believed that he ‘was targeted because of his campaigning for Palestinian rights’ and that ‘Israeli officials had a file on him’. Goodness… Murray certainly can’t be fooled!! Very smart indeed.

Had he simply told the truth rather than hiding his planned attendance at the ‘conference’ (anti-Israel hate-fest somewhere in the West Bank presumably), he would have been able to enter without any special attention. People visit Ramallah – capital of Palestine – and Bethlehem and Nablus all the time. Instead, Murray managed to sacrifice his trip to Palestine in exchange for lots of news exposure at home. Perhaps this had been his intention all along. As it stands though, Murray will be unable to travel to West Bank through Israel for 10-years.

Perhaps he can go to Gaza instead… via Egypt… well… probably not actually. Egypt has sealed its border with Gaza!!!… You’ll not read about that much in the press however.

Corner of image_Images from Palestine

Then there is Bill Mair, Solidarity candidate for the constituency of Mid-Scotland and Fife in the forthcoming 2016 Scottish Parliament elections.


Bill Mair - candidate for 'Solidarity' in 2016 Scottish elections - can be viewed on party websites and party social media.
Bill Mair – candidate for ‘Solidarity’ in 2016 Scottish elections – can be viewed on party websites and party social media.

Mair spreads lies and helps peddle propaganda… the sort of propaganda and narrative that Goebbels would have been proud of. In another life Mair might have found a career in ‘strategic communications’.

Shared to social media by Bill Mair... a false 'Image from Palestine'.
Shared to social media by Bill Mair… a false ‘Image from Palestine’.

He creates and pushes a narrative in the streets and through social media that instructs on how we should view Israel and its policies. He likes to turn Israel into the ‘Dick Dastardly’ or ‘Snidely Whiplash’… the arch-villain and foil to the ever-innocent ‘damsel-in-distress’, Palestine. He demonises Israel through spreading propaganda. Once we have a ‘Dick Dastardly’ stuck in the mind of the frenzied student demonstrating against Israeli dancers at the local theatre, or against other Israeli performances, you can then say whatever you want about him, and then disparage anyone who dares to question the narrative, offer a different narrative and analysis, or question the extreme depiction. This is what Mair helps to do when spreading lies.

Image claimed to be of Palestine... the chimney stacks, the roofing, in fact everything, point to a European city.
Image claimed to be of Palestine… the chimney stacks, the roofing, in fact everything, point(s) to a European city.

A few weeks ago on social media, in October 2015, Mair shared an image which claimed to be from among a collection of ‘Images from Palestine’. The image showed part of a very battered city which clearly had suffered sustained shelling and perhaps bombing over a very long time. In the bottom left-hand corner there was a title, ‘Images from Palestine’. Making way along the battered cobbled street was lone figure. There was no other sign of life. It was a shatter zone. Sharing the image was a quote attributed to Don Freeman which read, ‘If people destroyed my home, killed my family, and bombed my country, I would become a terrorist too’.

The same city view as that appearing as an 'Image from Palestine'.
The same city view as that appearing as an ‘Image from Palestine’.

To the trained eye, and to anyone who has spent more time in the Middle East than a stop-over at Amman, Dubai or Abu Dhabi airports, everything about the image was wrong in its claim to be an ‘image from Palestine’ or image from any other city or town beyond the shores of the eastern Mediterranean. The cobbled street was wrong, the lamp-posts and chimney stacks were wrong, the roofing was wrong, the window structures were wrong… indeed, everything about the image spoke ‘central Europe’ not Middle East… everything about the photograph spoke of World War Two… maybe Berlin… more likely Warsaw.

Street in modern Warsaw which may be compared to the false 'image from Palestine'.
Street in modern Warsaw which may be compared to the false ‘image from Palestine’.

Indeed the same image had been used some years before to publicise the film The Pianist, 2002 (Roman Polanski), based on the autobiographical memoirs of Polish-Jewish composer, Władysław Szpilman.

Mair was challenged about sharing or spreading the image on his pages, and he asked in response where he had posted it, but remembered and wrote, ‘I think the idea is to compare bombed WW2 cities to Gaza’.

But of course we all know what Mair’s idea was… the spreading of lies. And there we have it, as far as Bill Mair, Solidarity candidate for Mid-Scotland & Fife is concerned, it is perfectly acceptable to spread on social media an example of ‘Images from Palestine’ when it isn’t an image from Palestine. It is acceptable to support your cause with a false claim. It is perfectly acceptable as far as Mair is concerned to then use a false image for propaganda purposes. It is perfectly acceptable for Mair to tell a story that goes like this:

‘Here is a picture of a bombed city from Europe during World War 2… Palestinian communities have also suffered bomb damage… They might look like this… In fact so that you think it is a Palestinian town or city, we have placed a label on the WW2 image saying that it is… when it isn’t…!!!’.

Bill Mair - candidate in 2016 Scottish elections... Solidarity.
Bill Mair – candidate in 2016 Scottish elections… Solidarity.

Let’s hope that Bill Mair languishes in the political wilderness, along with his party. Let’s not give his party our 2nd vote in 2016. Also, as far as Andrew Murray is concerned, let’s hope the SNP learns fast and starts to project a more grown-up and balanced ‘foreign policy’. By all means support the people of Palestine, but do it by demonstrating against the fascist leaderships of Fatah and Hamas.

Academic boycott – failure of BDS – loss of Palestinian jobs

The student newspaper of Edinburgh University (The Student, Tuesday 3 November 2015)  recently carried a report on the public pledge signed by UK academics to boycott Israeli universities. The piece offered reasonably balanced student and academic opinion about the matter, and included comment from both the Palestine Solidarity Campaign (PSC) and the Union of Jewish Students (UJS).

The pledge of the UK academics doubtless brought enthusiastic applause across Edinburgh campuses, not least among local supporters of the Scottish Palestine Solidarity Campaign (SPSC). However, let us get this all into perspective. Based on the number of academics and universities reported on, a mere 6-7 academics in each of the 72 universities appear to have actually signed the public pledge, according to the report. Since there are something like 109 university institutions across the UK, with 90-odd in England alone, and since the returns of the Higher Education Statistics Agency tell us that there were 194,245 UK academic staff in 2013-2014, the level of response must surely be read as a dismal failure of the much-lauded ‘latest salvo in the broader Boycott, Disinvestment and Sanctions (BDS) campaign’.

It is always possible that the intentions of those 400 out of 190,000 or so academics are positive ones and completely devoid of bigotry, and simply the expression of a desire to ‘help’ Palestinians against particular Israeli policy, perceived policy, or set of Israeli behaviours. However, when there are no comparable boycott campaigns to exclude any other states based on this or that – when Israel is regarded almost as ‘the’ singular evil – then alarm bells ought to start ringing.

Why the focus on Israel? Why no criticism of Egypt for its demolition of houses in Gaza to make way for a barrier? Why is there not even a whimper, not a petition, not a protest, when Palestinians suffer in their thousands in Syria? Why no boycott of China (a country that ‘disappears’ dissenting Tibetans) or Russia for human rights abuses? Or of Myanmar for its treatment of the Rohingya community? Why no focus on the many states where freedom of the press and freedom of speech are lacking? Or of those where there is no functioning legal system? Why no focus on those countries where trade unions and political parties are illegal? Why no focus on countries where there is no democracy? Why no pressure on Palestinian leaderships to dump ‘rejectionism’ and become the actors in a conflict it is within their power to resolve?

Exclusive focus on Jewish Israel for boycott, will normalise Jews across the world as suitable targets for exclusion and punishment. If we can anthropomorphise things a bit, and look at Israel as a student playing in a playground of countries; if we then witnessed a teaching assistant look out the window to watch bullying students terrorising their classmates, and then yank inside for detention the Jewish kid trying to defend him or herself, then we’d want to start asking questions. We’d smell a vague whiff of bigotry.

The piece in The Student noted that the move by academics was ‘hailed by Palestinian rights groups’ and that their pledge ‘was lauded by Palestinian advocacy organisations’. Qatari-born Omar Barghouti, a founding member of the Palestinian Campaign for the Academic and Cultural Boycott of Israel (PACBI) and founding member of the BDS movement, and who has attended Tel Aviv University (can anyone else see the irony of that one) will doubtless have hailed and lauded the academics. But, what about the Palestinian Government? Has it hailed and lauded the UK academic boycott? Isn’t it the case that the Palestinian Government is disparaging of the BDS movement, and doesn’t believe that it serves the interests of the Palestinian people?

Though skilled at offering one view to Arab audiences and another to non-Arabic-speaking audiences, even Mahmoud Abbas has condemned the boycotting of Israel. Indeed, Palestinian infrastructural decision-making also tells a story far from supportive of BDS. For example, the first buyer of natural gas from Israel’s largest gas field in the Mediterranean will be the Palestine Power Generation Company (PPGC) which supplies power to Palestinian areas in the West Bank. PPGC will buy around $1.2-billion worth of gas over 20-years. The Israeli Leviathan Group will sell the PPGC as much as 4.75-billion cubic metres of gas when the Leviathan product begins to flow in 2016 or 2017. The Palestinian company aims to build a $300-million power plant in the West bank city of Jenin to produce electricity from the gas.

It would seem that local Palestinian economic policy is at odds with the shrill calls from distant Europe. Indeed, Professor Jonathan Rosenhead of the London School of Economics has made himself heard through the clamour. He tells The Student that if Israel continues with its policies ‘there are consequences’ and ‘Israel in the end will feel some of the disadvantages which Palestinians already have’. Really?

Isn’t it the case that BDS actions also have consequences, and add to Palestinian disadvantage? Didn’t the movement recently wreck Palestinian job opportunities? Didn’t the successful Israeli Sodastream business leave the West Bank for a new and larger plant at Rahat in the Negev Desert as a result of BDS activity? This action had the consequence of offering more jobs for Israelis and losing 500 Palestinians their employment in the West Bank. Sodastream had been paying them at Israeli wage levels, and had provided private health insurance. The producer of the Bagel-Bagel snack and a global producer of locks – Abloy – also left the West Bank for Israel proper once BDS got stuck in. More jobs for Israelis. Nice one BDS! Always doing something to help Palestine!

While BDS loses Palestinians their jobs, Jordanians are flocking to neighbouring Israel for employment (again, can anyone see the irony of that). This year, just like last year, some 1,500 Jordanian workers are being recruited in three groups of 500 to work in the busy Eilat hotel industry. Israeli Eilat lies adjacent to Jordanian Aqaba in the southern Negev at the top of the Gulf of Eilat, the same stretch of water that laps the beaches of Sharm El-Sheikh. Imagine what a peace treaty like the one between Israel and Jordan could do for Palestinians? Over to you Mr. Abbas.

As the BDS movement continues to show gross failure and incompetence, it is the 189,600 or so UK academics not signing the public pledge to boycott Israeli universities who will be seen to have stood on the right side of history.

Bassem Eid… the Palestinian who blasts Hamas and Fatah

Somebody that the SPSC should be listening a lot more to is Bassem Eid, the founder and former director of the Jerusalem-based Palestinian Human Rights Monitoring Group (PHRMG). Bassem Eid is an advocate for peace with Israel, and a critic of terrorism and is part of the ‘Stop the Boycott’ movement.

Indeed, those posting in social media in the last few days lamenting the loss of lives in Gaza and lack of reconstruction in the wake of the 1st anniversary of Israel’s defensive ‘Operation Protective Edge’ should also pay attention to Bassem Eid.

There is one pure and simple reason why there has been a year-long delay in the reconstruction of the entity, says Eid…: In spite of a so-called Unity Government, both Hamas (Gaza-Palestine) and Mahmoud Abbas (West-Bank-Palestine) want to hold the purse strings of the reconstruction funds for Gaza, which donor nations have pledged at some US $ 5.5 billion.

As far as Hamas is concerned, the top priority is the reconstruction of its military capabilities and terror tunnels. Why ?  Because Egyptians have created a 2-kilometer buffer zone and have removed smuggling tunnels that have made Hamas leaders into billionaires. What is the result of this ? This has meant that new general taxes on Gazans have had to be imposed, and in addition, a new mosque tax in Gaza during the holy month of Ramadan has been conjured up. Each person who wishes to stay in a mosque for Ramadan services must pay 20 shekels from the 19th of Ramadan to the 29th of Ramadan… that’s 200 shekels thank you very much!!

Relying on testimonies submitted by ordinary Gazans, a report by The Independent Commission for Human Rights (ICHR), has stated that the taxes imposed on different commodities and services in the Gaza Strip have aggravate the suffering of the people. These are not Israeli taxes (the entity is no longer administered by Israel)…. these are Hamas taxes!!

Bassem Eid also reminds us of the statistics of the suffering brought upon Gaza-Palestine by Hamas and other terror groups and their affiliated Rocket Brigades:

  • 5 million tons of rubble remains in Gaza
  • 200,000 workers have lost their means of employment
  • 80% of the Gazan people are surviving on welfare
  • 40% of Gazans are living below poverty lines
  • 22,000 Gazans are homeless
  • 29 Palestinians were executed by Hamas during the war
  • several terror bombings occurred in the Gaza strip by (internal Gazan) Salafist groups

Eid was in touch with other Gazans in Khan Younis and Shuja’iyya who said that:

  • the rule of Hamas in the Gaza Strip is like throwing us into a pit… if Hamas continues their policies, they will bring more death and destruction to their own people
  • we are living under a dictatorship regime… Hamas kills any opposition… since Hamas took over the Gaza Strip in 2007, there is an absence of any Palestinian political factions in the Gaza Strip… today it looks as if the next upcoming war bells are ringing
  • the situation in Gaza right now is that hunger, poverty and unemployment reached the highest percentage since Hamas took over the Gaza Strip

According to Eid it is both Hamas and Fatah should be held responsible for the fact that there are no schools, no hospitals, no electricity and no proper drinking water for Gazans.

Get that???… Not Israel’s responsibility or fault… But that of Hamas and Fatah…!!!