Finland’s leading Swedish news daily the Hufvudstadsbladet continues where it “Left” off, with its latest salvo directed at the Jewish state. Long time contributor to the Tundra Tabloids, Daniel, sent the following observation of the HBL’s “ace” reporter Matts Gezelius.
An article about Israel’s occupation of Golan in HBL.Not one word about the reason for the occupation, and of course Gezelius found some arabs there who hate Israel.
When a journalist –continually– sets out to write articles with the intention of not to inform, but to promote his/her own political POV, you can be assured that s/he will be successful. The only descriptive I can think of that accurately captures the kind of journalist Matts Gezelius is, who would be a hack.
Tundraman notes: This is actually a prime example of how the Gezelius’ hostile attitude towards Israel penetrates each and every report he publishes in the HBL – and they are many. he should simply be kicked out of there! I translated only the worst fragments below. The titles in capitals are my own.
1,) ON THE HISTORY OF GOLAN AND THE CUNNINNG WAY IN WHICH ISRAEL “OCCUPIED” IT:
“Officially it was not a settlement. Weiner and his pals were “temporary volunteers” for gathering sheep and cows who were running wild in the heights after the war. The owners, 131 000 Syrians from 131 villages, 112 farms and two cities, had fled and were not welcome back.…. They [the Israelis] came from kibbutzes, collective villages in Northern Israel. They knew they were there in order to establish a new kibbutz, as their parents and grandparents had done before them, and before the establishment of the state of Israel. Also the government of Israel knew this when it approved on August 27th 1967 “the ongoing farming on the Golan heights”. That was all. The Israeli settlement of the occupied territories had started, as it has continued. Without formal decisions. Never the less, the fact that the “Syrian heights” had in the government’s protocol for the first time been given a Hebrew name, was a hint of what was to come.”
2.)A KICK TOWARDS “EXTREMIST” JEWS ON THE WEST BANK AND A HINT TOWARDS ECONOMIC INTERESTS DRIVING THE ISRAELIS TO KEEP GOLAN:
“While many of the settlements of the West Bank are dominated by literalistic Jewish extremists who believe that God has given them exclusive right to the historical Israel, the settlers of Golan are more pragmatic. Their motive for coming here was national security and quality of life. And water. Israel is dependent on the feeder streams from Golan for its water supplies.”
3.) ON LEFTISTS WHO ARE “RIGHT” IN OPPOSING SETTLEMENT ON “OCCUPIED” LAND:
“We [the interviewed Israeli settlers] had long discussions on whether or not it was right to settle on occupied territory. Those who were further left that me stayed down there. He points towards the deep valley with the Lake of Gennesaret, far below. Now Black is one of the most eager proponents of a negotiated solution with Syria.”
4.) ON THE PRESUMTUOUS ISRAELIS:
” Then he [the Israeli settler] says what makes patriotic Druses to bristle up – even if it is true.- I can move back to Israel. It would be worse for the Druses who are used to Western democracy and standard of living. They will have a tough time under Syria. – The Israeli attitude is so incredibly presumptuous. What do they think they are, some charitable society with the right to spread out democracy and prosperity by force of arms?
5.) ON THE RIGHT TO “HATE THE OCCUPATION” AND “FACTS” OF “DESTRUCTION” AND “SEIZURE”:
Salman Fakhir Deen puffs his cigarette exasperatedly. He is a writer, agitator and anarchist. Syrian, but not Druse. To be Druse is a religious membership. I hate religion. He hates the occupation even more. Fakhir rattles off facts on destroyed villages, mine fields, seizure of land, army bases in villages, the unequal distribution of water and other resources. Can you see that the cisterns where the farmers collect rain water are numbered? This is so that the Israelis are able to tax them. They have commandeered even the rain!”
6.) ON THE ENORMOUS SUFFERING OF PEOPLE UNDER ISRAELI “OCCUPATION” AND CRUELTY, WHICH IS WORSE THAN BEING IN TROUBLE WITH SYRIAN AUTHORITIES!:
“Abu Naser is 70 years old. Now he is retired. He tells about his hardships during all the years he drove a taxi. How he time and again was stopped by the security forces and the frontier police, was arrested and taken for interrogation. He is bitter and says that his bad health is a consequence of all the hours he has been forced to stand outside in snow and rain while the Israelis have checked his papers,- I long back home to Syria, he says. Fakhir Deen was one of the leaders for the protests against the Israeli annexation of the Golan heights in 1981, when the Druses went on strike and burnt their Israeli ID-cards. He has been sitting in Israeli jails eleven times. He knows that his oppositional attitude would create equally much trouble with the ubiquitous Syrian security forces, mukhabarat.- The great majority, like Abu Naser, would be able to live a calm and secure life in Syria. People like myself will always have problems. But I rather have problems with my own authorities in my own country.”
The problem with activist journalists such as Matts Gezelius, is not just their activism disguised as a factual articles, it is with the supposed “gate keepers” of these papers –in this case, Max Arhippainen– who sign off on this kind of tripe day in and day out.
What would cause an editor of a paper to overlook the grand omissions in an article by one of its journalists, other than that he ideologically agrees that Israel is the chief villain, and to hell with the facts?
(1.) No mention of the events that lead to the war in 67′, no mention that Israel was forced to act or be destroyed.
(2) No mention that the overwhelming majority of Israelis living in the WB live in suburbs of Jerusalem, and are secular. And that Israel’s neighbor Syria can’t be trusted not to dam the waters which feed Israel’s underground cisterns.
(3) When looking for an Israeli to help buttress your deep seated views, just turn to the Left, they’ll help you out. It never hurts to have a Jew in your corner to help your piece along, it also helps to shield you from being labeled an anti-Semite.
(4) Given a choice, Arabs residing in Israel would reject being forced to live under Palestinian and Syrian rule. That’s a fact. That he can find some Arab somewhere in the Golan who says differently means absolutely nothing. Perhaps only between his own two ears.
(5) The evil Jews, having inconsistancies within its democracy that has had to defend itself from its neighbors since its conception, does not merit any further consideration. No Israeli advocate I know of states that Israel is without blemish, but why all the angst, especially when compared to its neighbors? If this is not a double standard, then the meaning is lost.
(6) Oh…to live under Syrian oppression is much better than to live under a Jewish democracy where my vote actually counts and whose economy enables me to send my children to college and have a future if they so desire. I long for the long arm of its security police as well as its proven judical system, that affords me the confidence that all my gripes will be addressed in a just way. I also long for the Syrian time held tradition of voicing my opinions on the street corner, even if it means calling its beloved president (that just won 97% of the vote in the recent election) a mean spirited wanker.
Kumitonttu: “Without Jewish immigration into the area there would live maybe 50% less arabs and probably all as nomads. If that makes them and the reporter happy, I’m not surprised.
There is a small border village called Qunetra in Syria, who claims it was all ruined by Israelis, and it is still(?) widely showed to tourists. But, that was false of course, and the Syrians themselves ruined the town for propaganda purposes. A pity the reporter didn’t visit there!
It is possible and actually I personally believe so, that the gap of living standards between Jews and Arabs is wider now than it was 1987 years ago (and 1967), but I cannot see how the Israelis should be blamed for that?
That is so balony (Elaine’s expression from Seinfeld).” (Editor: Ditto)