Friday, October 29, 2010

British "Journalist" Ben White at UC-Irvine

Ben White, "journalist", activist, propagandist

Last night, a guy named Ben White became the third British propagandist brought to speak at UC-Irvine by the campus  Muslim Student Union, er, Alkalima-Muslim Students at UCI (their temporary name). The first two speakers who came were Yvonne Ridley and George Galloway (Two dopes). Now comes this kid Ben White to push his book, "Israeli Apartheid-A Beginner's Guide. (indeed).  Also sponsoring the event was the newly-formed campus chapter of Students for Justice in Palestine. And just who are the Students for Justice Palestine, you ask?

You don't wanna know.

White is an anti-Israel activist who makes the university rounds giving a totally one-sided account of the  Israel-Palestine conflict. This young man (he looks about 19) brought his power-point presentation to UCI in front of a crowd that was about 90% pro-Palestinian. He is a boring, pedantic speaker, who relies on his power points as an outline for his speech. With his boyish appearance, it looked like a high school valedictorian speech. After the first 4-5 minutes, I became so bored, I reached for my copy of Mad Magazine, which I had conveniently brought with me.

To summarize White's speech, it was a litany of all of Israel's "crimes" against the Palestinian people from the establishment of the state of Israel, to the settlements, to the arrests, to the blah blah blah, woof woof woof, quack quack quack. He quoted the exalted opinions of the UN, the EU, the world community, and everyone except the Sons of the Desert.
"At their annual convention today in Chicago, the Sons of the Desert condemned Israel's "illegal settlements."

Here is what he didn't talk about. Not one word about Palestinian terrorism. Not one word about the Arab wars launched against Israel. Not one word about suicide bombings. Not one word about rockets launched
into Israel by Hamas or Hizbollah. 

And this guy calls himself a journalist?

Well, anyway, when the Q and A arrived, I jumped up to the microphone and asked him about an article he had written in February of 2009, which was entitled; "What about the Palestinians right of self-defense?" I read the following excerpt, which he had written. (You might want to read this sitting down.)

Your humble skunk at the garden party

“In fact, the Palestinians have indeed long been practitioners of civil disobedience, from the Revolt in 1936, to the First Intifada in the late 1980s, and right up to the present day. Palestinians are, in fact, proud of their tradition of nonviolent resistance." (White)

 (Can't make this up, folks.)

I then recounted a series of events which I had dusted off from my life's memory bank. I began with the sky-jackings of the late 1960s-70s. I mentioned the Munich Olympic massacre of 1972. I mentioned the terror attacks in Europe, such as the massacres at Vienna and Rome airports in the 1980s.  I mentioned the Achille Lauro attack, in which an elderly Jewish American named Leon Klinghofer was thrown overboard in his wheelchair. I mentioned the suicide bombings, the blowing up of buses and pizza parlors and the rocket attacks into Israel. I also brought up the inconvenient fact that one of the main figures in the "non-violent" 1936 (-1939) Revolt in Palestine was none other than the Grand Mufti of Jerusalem Amin-al Husseini, who fled Jerusalem in 1937 and wound up in Berlin during WW II as a guest of Hitler, from where he made radio broadcasts to the Middle East urging his listeners to drive out the Jews. He also made his own contribution to the war effort by helping organize a Bosnian SS division, which participated in the Holocaust. I concluded by asking him to explain all that in the face of his claims of Palestinian non-violence. (I will be posting a video of this exchange shortly.)

White replied by stating that this was a typical (Alan) Dershowitz tactic. He then went on to vaguely imply that some people had fabricated the famous photos of the Grand Mufti (meeting Hitler in Berlin and reviewing Bosnian SS troops during WW II). At that point, he returned to his original  talking points without even coming close to addressing the question about his claims of Palestinian non-violence as opposed to documented terror incidents. He could not challenge the facts of those incidents.

(For you UC Santa Cruz Community Studies majors, the Grand Mufti is the one on the left.)

Grand Mufti reviewing Bosnian Waffen SS troops 1941

Yet,  the audience applauded his response. They applauded every response he made as he skirted hostile questions. He could have said the moon was made of Limburger cheese and the audience would have applauded.

About 9-10 people came up to ask questions. A few were Jewish defenders of Israel. I think a few members of  the Jewish campus group, Anteaters for Israel, were there.  I had hoped maybe the Orange County Jewish Federation or Hillel might come to make their "voices" heard, but I guess they still figure they have "won the war" with the MSU "suspension".  They don't want to hear the bad news that nothing has changed at UCI. Interestingly, with one final questioner waiting to ask a question, the moderator brought the Q and A and the event to a close-as the final questioner stood there dumb-founded. He happened to be the president of  Anteaters for Israel. Coincidence? We don't think so.

This was a typical anti-Israel event, so commonly held on university campuses. Only a handful of audience members were pro-Israel and the speaker gave a totally one-sided presentation with no mention of the 800 pound  elephants standing in the back of the room-Palestinian terrorism and the right of Israel to defend herself. This is what passes for journalism-and education on university campuses.  All in all, White is.......what's the word?
An arrogant little twit.


Siarlys Jenkins said...

So an arrogant little twit made a one-sided presentation. Why don't you make your own one-sided presentation? Better yet, why don't you sponsor a multiplex presentation which reviews the many acts of terrorism committed by the legions of the Grand Mufti, the armies of Iraq, Egypt, and Jordan (all commanded by effete monarchies), the Stern gang, the militarized "religious" settlers in the West Bank, put it all on the line.

Ben White's most serious misrepresentation is to credit "the Palestinians" with being an epistemologically homogenous entity throughout the time heis speaking of. They are not. Neither are "the Jews."

Gary Fouse said...

Ben White also labels himself a journalist. I am not a journalist.

Siarlys Jenkins said...

A rose by any other name would still be just as red.

Gary Fouse said...


Why don't I mention about Hannibal crossing the Alps?

Or was that Sir Edmund Hillary?

Siarlys Jenkins said...

Oh, you don't think the Grand Mufti is relevant to a discussion of Israel? Or was that the Czar of All the Russias? Or is it irrelevant what kind of governments Israel fought against in 1948?

Anonymous said...

Mohamed Ali Eltaher (Aboul-Hassan - b. 1896 Nablus) published "Al-Shabab" [The Youth] from February 1937 until April 1939.

In the Oct.26.1938 issue, it states "الله ولي أهل فلسطين الذين لا هتلر لهم ولا أمّة لهم."
"Allah is the guardian of the people of Palestine who have neither Hitler nor a nation for them."

Gary Fouse said...

I am not sure I understand your point. If you are referring to Hitler, he was partners with the Grand Mufti of Jerusalem during WW 2. The Grand Mufti helped organize a Bosnian (Muslim) SS Division during the war and broadcast from Berlin to the Middle East urging his followers to drive the Jews out. He also spent the war years in Berlin under Hitler's protection.
Just another fun fact in the sordid history of the so-called "Palestinian people".