Anti-Israel bigotry and bias Finnish media Helsingin Sanomat




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HS editor-in-chief Virkkunen: Criticism of Israel isn’t anti-Semitism

But that’s the default position of the legacy media, they’ll never admit to the fact that highly irrational criticism of Israel, on some level, indeed falls into the realm of anti-Semitism. For example, the narcissistic EIC of the Helsingin Sanomat, Janne Virkkunen, assured the crowd gathered at the Israel-seminar in Turku Finland, “that he’s neither an anti-Semite, nor anti-Israel,” but that “Israel can be criticized when it’s warranted, for example Israel’s continued building of settlements, though Israel is internationally committed not to continue building them.”

What a chump. Israel agreed to the Road Map “with 14 reservations“, which included the building of additional homes in existing settlements. The Oslo accords never mentioned anything about the expansion of settlements nor the building of new settlements in general, but reserved the issue for future negotiations. When it comes to the legality of the settlements as a whole, look no further than to one of the persons who helped to craft UNSC 242, Former Under-Secretary, Eugene Rostow:

Resolution 242, which as undersecretary of state for political affairs between 1966 and 1969 I helped produce, calls on the parties to make peace and allows Israel to administer the territories it occupied in 1967 until “a just and lasting peace in the Middle East” is achieved. When such a peace is made, Israel is required to withdraw its armed forces “from territories” it occupied during the Six-Day War–not from “the” territories nor from “all” the territories, but from some of the territories, which included the Sinai Desert, the West Bank, the Golan Heights, East Jerusalem, and the Gaza Strip. […]
The heated question of Israel’s settlements in the West Bank during the occupation period should be viewed in this perspective. The British Mandate recognized the right of the Jewish people to “close settlement” in the whole of the Mandated territory. It was provided that local conditions might require Great Britain to “postpone” or “withhold” Jewish settlement in what is now Jordan. This was done in 1922. But the Jewish right of settlement in Palestine west of the Jordan river, that is, in Israel, the West Bank, Jerusalem, and the Gaza Strip, was made unassailable. That right has never been terminated and cannot be terminated except by a recognized peace between Israel and its neighbors. And perhaps not even then, in view of Article 80 of the U.N. Charter, “the Palestine article,” which provides that “nothing in the Charter shall be construed … to alter in any manner the rights whatsoever of any states or any peoples or the terms of existing international instruments….”
Some governments have taken the view that under the Geneva Convention of 1949, which deals with the rights of civilians under military occupation, Jewish settlements in the West Bank are illegal, on the ground that the Convention prohibits an occupying power from flooding the occupied territory with its own citizens. President Carter supported this view, but President Reagan reversed him, specifically saying that the settlements are legal but that further settlements should be deferred since they pose a psychological obstacle to the peace process.
In any case, the issue of the legality of the settlements should not come up in the proposed conference, the purpose of which is to end the military occupation by making peace. When the occupation ends, the Geneva Convention becomes irrelevant. If there is to be any division of the West Bank between Israel and Jordan, the Jewish right of settlement recognized by the Mandate will have to be taken into account in the process of making peace.
This reading of Resolution 242 has always been the keystone of American policy. In launching a major peace initiative on September 1, 1982, President Reagan said, “I have personally followed and supported Israel’s heroic struggle for survival since the founding of the state of Israel thirty-four years ago: in the pre-1967 borders, Israel was barely ten miles wide at its narrowest point. The bulk of Israel’s population lived within artillery range of hostile Arab armies. I am not about to ask Israel to live that way again.”

The Helsingin Sanomat and the rest of the Finnish news media that takes its lead from that newspaper, will have to wrestle with the facts the Tundra Tabloids publishes here, in order to be taken seriously as a credible voice on the Arab-Israeli conflict. That they refuse to mention any of these facts only serves to underline their ideological biased views vis-a-vis the Jewish state of Israel, which at times, does indeed cross over into anti-Semitism. 

4 Responses

  1. Vain valtioita voidaan miehittää Neljännen Geneva Konventionin mukaan.

    "The Convention shall also apply to all cases of partial or total occupation of the territory of a High Contracting Party"

    Koska PA ei ole "a High Contracting Party", niin siihen ei voi myöskään soveltaa valtioita koskevaa kansainvälistä lainsäädäntöä.

    Siis on väärin sanoa, että Israel "miehittäisi" jotakin.

  2. How right you are Kari, you have more knowledge of the facts in your little finger, than Virkkunen has in his entire body.

    The situation is actually easy to understand if people are willing to understand international law and what the official agreements and documents say.

    Israel stands on excellent ground, its the other side that needs to obfuscate the issues.

  3. Hi Kenneth,

    Not exactly on this issue, but do you have an interest in this on the blog page? Anyway, FYI. Take care man, you're a blessing! Stefan


    The monumental stupidity of the Swedish FM Carl Bildt

    Dear KGS,

    It’s been a busy day, but I have to report this to the TT. Sweden, as the present president of the EU, has declared through her FM Bildt that the Goldstone report has significant value and Israel’s and Hamas war crimes must be given serious treatment in the UN.

    Effectively Bildt puts EU in a position that supports purely Hamas and ruins any hopes of the PLO to remain in power in the coming PA elections. It is unthinkable that the Swedish FM is ignorant of the following:

    Pakistan, following the suggestion of the PLO, withdrew the Goldstone report from further discussions in the UN human rights council. The reason for that was not the animosity between PLO and Hamas. The real reason was the Israeli government stance. Israeli government expressed in very clear terms, that were the Goldstone report conclusions adopted, she will withdraw from the peace process.

    The reasons are crystal clear. When Israel takes chances for peace, such as the total withdrawal from the Gaza strip, it becomes a target of massive rocket terrorism against which she is not allowed to protect herself. In such a situation any concessions (risks) for peace cannot be justified.

    Abu Mazen and the PLO understood that there is a limit to what Israel can take and preferred to stay in the process. A situation that is by far more useful to the PLO than busting the process.

    Hamas, as the party not interested in the peace process, felt blood and started to warm the street claiming that Abu Mazen has betrayed the Palestinians. For some days already Gazans have thrown shoes at a giant Abu Mazen poster, the alleged traitor.

    The PLO has thus been forced to move behind the Goldstone report, which, as indicated above, will put an end to the peace process. Just to clarify the issue, the peace process is the only substantial card the PLO has against Hamas in the coming elections.

    President Barack already brought the peace process to its knees by making a cardinal mistake. By demanding Israel to totally freeze building even in the existing settlements, Israel became very aware that the so called peace process appears to function only against Israel without any reciprocal actions. Moreover, the Palestinians could naturally not demand anything less than the US. PM Netanyahu had to make some extreme moves to sustain these requirements and to remain in power.

    Now FM Bildt has decided to put the EU into a position that will end the peace process and, subsequently, bring Hamas to power also in the West Bank. The initial death blow to the peace process was naturally the grossly biased and one sided Goldstone report. FM Bildt just had to make sure that the effect is a lasting one.

    Make no mistake. PLO will not make peace with Israel any more than Hamas will. Occupied territories for both of them contain also the area of Israel proper. So what’s the problem? Well, there is a huge difference. As long as there is something called peace process, it will circumvent flare ups and guarantee some degree of decent life to the Palestinians.

    So Mr. Bildt, do you really know what you are doing or is it just too difficult to pass an opportunity to lambast Israel?

  4. Lisäksi on huomattava, että kansainvälinen yhteisö; Israel, PA, USA että Venäjä ovat sitoutuneet huolehtimaan Länsirannalla ja Gazassa olevien israelilaisten ja juutalaisten asutusten(setlements)järjestyksestä ja turvallisyydesta kansainvälisten sopimusten(mm OsloII/ interim agreement) edellyttämällä tavalla. Joten Länsirannalla olevat juutalaiset asutukset ovat kansainvälisen lain mukaisia ja sen suojelemia.

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