Dear Ms. Atwood, I Regret to Inform You that You Have Failed the Lie Detector Test

By going to Israel to accept the Dan David Prize you have chosen to go over to the Dark Side. If you do make the trip, there is no turning back. Please consider well what people who have appreciated your literary work and heretofore took seriously your vaunted support for human rights have to say. I have copied below some of their comments from emails that have been circulating. First, here is an exchange of letters between Atwood and Antoine Raffoul:

Dear Mr. Raffoul,

Since the Dan David Prize has been announced and I have accepted it. I have received several letters from different groups asking me to reverse my acceptance and boycott this event. I believe that Amitav Ghosh, with whom the prize is shared, has also begun to receive such letters. He and I have been chosen to receive the Dan David Prize for our literary work-work that is said to depict the twentieth century from the vantage point of our respective countries.

I sympathize with the very bad conditions the people of Gaza are living through due to the blockade, the military actions, and the Egyptian and Israeli walls. Everyone in the world hopes that the two sides involved will give up their inflexible positions and sit down at the negotiating table immediately and work out a settlement that would help the ordinary people who are suffering. The world wants to see fair play and humane behaviour, and it wants that more the longer the present situation continues and the worse the conditions become.

However, the Dan David Prize is a cultural event. It is not, as has been erroneously stated, an “Israeli” prize from the State of Israel, nor is it a prize “from Tel Aviv University,” but one founded and funded by an individual, just as the Griffin Prizes in Canada are. To boycott an individual simply because of the country he or she lives in would set a very dangerous precedent. And to boycott a discussion of literature such as the one proposed would be to take the view that literature is always and only some kind of tool of the nation that produces it — a view I strongly reject, just as I reject the view that any book written by a woman is produced by some homogeneous substance called “women.” Books are written by individuals.

Another dangerous precedent is the idea of a cultural boycott. Even those strongly endorsing a financial boycott, such as, Artists For Peace, reject cultural boycotts, which theysee as a form of censorship. (See their December 22 posting.) Indeed, such boycotts serve no good purpose if one of the hopes for the future is that peace and normal exchanges will be restored. PEN International, an organization of which I am a Vice President, is in favour of continuing dialogue that crosses borders of all kinds. In this situation, threats to open discussion come from both sides of the wall: consider this report from IFEX:

I realize that I am caught in a propaganda war between two desperate sides in a tragic and unequal conflict. I also realize that, no matter what I do, some people are going to disagree with my decision and attack me for it. That being the case, I have chosen to visit, to speak with a variety of people, and – as much as is possible — to see for myself, as I have done in other times and other countries many times before. After that, I will write my own Open Letter – something that I would otherwise be unable to do.

With respect,
Margaret Atwood

Dear Ms Atwood,

I am truly grateful for your response to my email which urges you to renounce the Dan David Prize 2010. May I be allowed a response to your kind email in order that I may shed light on some key statements you made about the Dan David Prize.

First of all, the letters and emails you received from those urging you to reject the Prize, were not meant to put you in a situation where, as you said, you feel “caught in a propaganda war between two desperate sides in a tragic and unequal conflict. I also realize that, no matter what I do, some people are going to disagree with my decision and attack me for it”.

The nature of this world we live in is that we are not only private individuals living in a private shell, but also members of a world society built on the principles of human rights and the rule of international law.
Some of us attain positions of importance, like yourself, which reinforce and protect these principles for future generations. For that, the world should hopefully be a better place. So you should not be caught in the middle of a conflict, but rather, become a contributor to its resolution.

The Palestine/Israel conflict is a tragic one and we are all part of it, directly or indirectly. It is tragic because one nation, Israel, chooses to occupy and de-humanize millions of Palestinians living under the worst occupation in modern history. You eloquently wrote that you “sympathize with the very bad conditions the people of Gaza are living through due to the blockade, the military actions, and the Egyptian and Israeli walls. Everyone in the world hopes that the two sides involved will give up their inflexible positions and sit down at the negotiating table immediately and work out a settlement that would help the ordinary people who are suffering. The world wants to see fair play.” I totally agree with you, but it is a fact that “the world” you speak about is precisely the world we all belong to as individuals, as groups and as rich and civilized societies. You and millions of others, would have an opinion to make about this world. We live on one planet and have witnessed, unfortunately, many wars in our lifetime and we
need to avoid similar ones in the future and to allow next generations to live in peace and harmony.

You go on to state that “the Dan David Prize is a cultural event. It is not, as has been erroneously stated, an “Israeli” prize from the State of Israel, nor is it a prize ‘from Tel Aviv University,’ but one founded and funded by an individual [Dan David]”. It may not be a prize from the State of Israel itself, but nor is it a prize from an individual. This prize and the event are the brainchild of Dan David, founder of the Dan David Foundation which is an enterprise headquartered at Tel Aviv University and funded with a $100 million donation from him. Dan David himself holds the title of Doctor Philosophiae Honoris Causa from Tel Aviv University and is a member of the Board of Governors of Tel Aviv University. The Dan David Prize is bestowed on its recipients in the presence of Israeli government officials (last year
it was Israeli President Shimon Peres when the Prize was awarded to Tony Blair – who left a shameful legacy in Iraq).

Dan David is not a simple individual but an important one for Israel. According to a detailed report in Haaretz newspaper in November 2007 (, Dan David is portrayed as an important philanthropist, more for the State of Israel than for the world. He may not be a household name there but his presence is felt everywhere. According to the report, “David owns 90% of the world automatic photo booth, and all the booths in every mall in Israel”. The Dan David Foundation is also engaged in myriad philanthropic projects in fields as varied as archaeology, medicine, and film.

Your portrayal of Dan David as “an individual” underestimates his real position and power. Despite his upbringing as a simple but smart child in Bucharest where he was born in 1920, Dan David, according to the report, “was active in various movements and became active in Zionism following his experiences in the Second World War”. He has been expanding his activities and “donates more to charity in Israel than to business”. The report continues, “[at]16 he joined a Zionist youth movement and helped organize aliyah from Romania [to Israel], where he continued to live”. Later, after the Romanian authorities allowed him to leave, “he went to relatives in Paris and in August 1960 he, his mother and aunts sailed on the Theodor Herzl to Israel. They lived in Herzliya and later moved to Tel Aviv…[He] now insists that he is an Israeli”.

One cannot but admire Dan David’s business acumen and success. But he is certainly not ‘anybody’ or any ‘individual’.

Finally, you argue that “to boycott an individual simply because of the country he or she lives in would set a very dangerous precedent. Another dangerous precedent is the idea of a cultural boycott”. It so happens that the country in question here is the State of Israel which is conducting daily military activities in the Occupied Palestinian Territories reminiscent of Apartheid South Africa. Its institutions whether, cultural, educational, industrial, scientific, judicial, agricultural or military, are part and parcel of the political institution of the State and harbour activities in tune with the policies of the State, working hand in hand to enforce the policies of an illegal occupation of Palestinian land.

Thank God you are not ‘any individual’. You are Margaret Atwood. You have an important voice in the literary world. You can have a stronger voice in the humanitarian one. We urge you to make a stand, by rejecting the Dan David Prize, or at the least in the body of your forthcoming Open Letter.

Respectfully yours,
Antoine Raffoul
Coordinator, 1948: LEST WE FORGET

Email excerpts:

Ms. Atwood, I deplore your decision to accept a prize that should not be accepted by any humanitarian. I deplore that you did not heed the Gazan students’ searing and articulate plea to you of more than a month ago. I deplore that you continued to throw justice and a right course of action to the winds in your rejection of Mr. Raffoul’s reasoned appeal. I am particularly disturbed by your characterization of Zionist Israel’s six-decade program of cleansing the Holy Land of the Palestinians in terms of “…two desperate sides in a tragic and unequal conflict.” Ms. Atwood: the Zionists controlling Israel are not desperate. They are criminally psychotic…

It is one thing to hold to noble beliefs, even very strong and passionate ones. It is quite another to translate one’s beliefs into actions at those times when History offers one a chance to participate in an important way. It is only when we translate our beliefs into action that we can claim that our beliefs, however passionately we may hold them, are worthy of being considered convictions. Today people all over the world are reconsidering their opinions of you. The Internet is droning with sadness, and worse, with the bitterness of betrayal, this morning as people who long for an opportunity to ‘make a difference’ themselves have seen that someone they considered as one of their own, someone who has passionately implored us, in all the body of her work, to seek justice, has failed to answer History’s call.. You had a chance to make a difference, Ms. Atwood. You had a chance to prove that your beliefs are deserving of being considered convictions. You had a chance to represent those who have been inspired by your work. But you chose not to answer this call. Some are very angry; others merely disillusioned, but rest assured that a large number of people all over this world who once admired you, and your work, now see you in a much different light.

Writers who have access to publishing outlets should try to bring Atwood’s betrayal into the public consciousness. It really is a striking story line. A writer who has built a career on appeals for human justice now goes to Tel Aviv to accept laurels, ignoring the monstrously inhuman injustice inflicted by that nation on innocent people?

While concerned citizens around the world are expressing their shock and dismay at your acceptance of this ‘literary’ award, I didn’t expect anything else from you. Unlike those who buy your books and place you on a pedestal, I have never bought your books nor placed you anywhere. And whereas your fans will be shocked by this admission, I always trust my intuition. And I’ve been proven correct by none other than yourself. You, Ms. Atwood, do not have a moral or social conscience, and a moral and social conscience is much more important than any award. You cannot buy a moral and social conscience. You either have it or you don’t. You clearly don’t.

“Palestine is the ultimate lie-detector.” No truer words were ever spoken. This will be a dark spot on Atwood’s career that will remain long after she and we are gone.

(from a Canadian activist and associate editor of an alternate-press internet site):

Despite everything she’s written and received acclaim for, her acceptance of this ‘award’ will forever show her in the eyes of people who give a damn about what happens to all of humankind, as solely lacking a moral conscience. Her efforts to excuse accepting the award are worse than accepting it. There are certain things that one cannot justify. In her case, this is one of them, and no amount of blather from her will ever justify this action on her part. I’m sickened by her actions, but, then, I never was a fan which makes me a lot more intuitive than I thought. … She’s “supposed” to be a “social” activist? One could laugh in derision if one had a mind to. Courage is obviously one characteristic she doesn’t have — at least not when it comes to doing the right thing. Of course, I’m sure the money played a role as well — doesn’t it always in those circumstances? Presenting these “awards” is just another way of ensuring silence with respect to the terrorist state and its supporters elsewhere. Another Canadian “icon” — gutless at best.

(from an Israeli Palestinian MD and author)

Your attempts to beat some sense into Atwood’s head is admirable. I am surprised that Amitav Ghosh, Atwood’s partner in this case of moral bribery, seems to be getting off scot free. The man can be held accountable on grounds of defaulting on the legacy of Gandhi, if on no other ground. He doesn’t even have the excuse of having grown up under the blinding glow of the West’s partiality to Zionism. He should not be spared our anger and dismay. Let us copy him in our mail to Atwood. I know he was properly warned in advance of accepting his half million.

(from an activist and internet investigative journalist residing in New Mexico):

Atwood’s excuses are worse than the actual acceptance of the award. In particular, her vile remarks about the “inflexible positions” held by both sides. Indeed, the Palestinian people refuse to bend on their demand that they receive justice and that Israel abide by international law. How terrible of them to be so “inflexible.” Likewise, the “propoganda war” she feels trapped within is a completely one sided war—62 years (plus) of lies and deceptions from the Zionists. Poor Ms. Atwood. How does she hold up under the pressure? It must be tough to be a multimillionaire celebrity faced with such gut wrenching decisions. Disgusting. She demonstrates not only her lack of compassion but also the depths of her ignorance. On a positive note, I sent out a notice recently about Gil Scott Heron having cancelled his upcoming concert in Tel Aviv. Good for him. Now if Joan Armatrading and Bob Dylan would demonstrate as much integrity. Bob Dylan, for effing sake!

(from a Palestinian Christian residing in beleaguered East Jerusalem [1948 refugee from West Jerusalem]; retired YWCA executive and private-school principal):

Thank you all for your input. We just felt the solidarity of writers through PALFEST which took place during this last week. Maybe they can help Ms Atwood see the light. Indeed how disappointing that a writer of her status cannot perceive the difference between the oppressed and the oppressor.

(from an activist and blogger residing in Mexico — me):

I posted the EI article on my site the following day. I didn’t post her specious, self-serving and enfuriating response. It’s the So. African Jewish writers who fought apartheid like Nadine Gordimer who really get my goat – she trekked to Israel too. I don’t even want to mention Leonard Cohen – I was one of many who wrote him with a plea not to give his concert, but I guess the tribal pull was too great. Well, these things take time. In a few years no one but zealots will go, if there’s still an Israel then. Our job is to bring about Israel’s demise as soon as possible, peacefully, before those psychopaths blow up the world.

(from an Irish activist and classical-music composer, which I feel compelled to quote in full):

I realise that I am too late to contribute to the messages calling upon you not to accept the Dan David Prize. There is an ironic reason for this: I have admired your fiction, poetry and ethical stance for so long that it never entered my head that you could possibly perpetrate such a betrayal. Although I have long been convinced that the issue of Palestine is the ultimate lie-detector, with residual naivety I believed that your commitment to truth would have enabled you to see through the tissue of lies that the Zionists and their defenders have woven in order to obfuscate a simple issue of oppression and dispossession.

But perhaps even more disheartening is the tissue of disingenuous evasions that you yourself have woven in order to disguise the ethical irresponsibility of having accepted this award. You describe the idea of a cultural boycott as “a dangerous precendent” and as “a form of censorship”, citing an organisation called Les artistes pour la paix which, on 22nd December 2009, expressed its support for the campaign of Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions called for by Palestinian civil society, but made an exception for artists because the supposed “contribution of artists and intellectuals is essential to the dissemination of the message of Peace…

I am myself a professional composer of classical music, and down the years have come to despair of the lazy and self-serving rationalisations artists dream up in order to exempt themselves from ordinary people’s struggle for justice. In this context it should be stressed that being “for peace” in Israel/Palestine is inadequate if one is not simultaneously “for justice”. Given that the Palestinian call for BDS does not make an exemption for artists and that there is a major Palestinian civil society organisation entirely dedicated to promoting the cultural boycott (, western artists adopting the contrary position must be aware that they are rejecting a call emanating from those whose oppression is maintained with the help of our own western governments – the Harper administration in Canada being an egregious example. Such artists must be prepared to face the suspicion that their own career interests have blinded them into sublimating the iniquity of their role when they thus deny the victim’s will. This denial adds an unpalatable note of self-pity to your attempted appropriation for yourself of the role of victim (“no matter what I do, some people are going to disagree…”) as you accept this lucrative Prize.

The shibboleth of “censorship” plays a sorry role in this charade. Censorship is indeed one of the central tactics of Zionism, both within the Israeli state and in the USA and many European countries where open support for the Palestinian cause and just criticism of Israel is all but excluded from the mainstream media and can constitute professional suicide in many walks of life. Do you believe that the cultural boycott which played a small but significant role in helping to end Apartheid in South Africa constituted “censorship” and therefore should not have been imposed? It is censorship of the most virulent type when the Israeli authorities prevent (as often happens) a Palestinian writer from travelling abroad to read his/her work, or when Israeli police intervene to shut down a Palestinian literary festival in East Jerusalem.

You might respond that “two wrongs don’t make a right”, but the truth is that culture is not a sacred realm floating far above the tribulations of the real world, and that artists in Israel and elsewhere are all too often complicit in the crimes of their governments – either by their silence, or by their willingness to allow their work and their presence to be appropriated by oppressive states. The Israeli foreign ministry has explicitly advocated employing culture as propaganda, a tactic that applies both to Israeli artists travelling abroad and to visiting artists, whose presence will inevitably be exploited as evidence of Israel’s “normality” and “acceptability” – although in reality Israel is a racist, apartheid state that is both abnormal and unacceptable.

In asking writers and other artists not to accept invitations to Israel or awards from the Israeli establishment, PACBI and other defenders of Palestinian rights are asking such artists voluntarily to reject their own exploitation by the Israeli state. To lend oneself to such exploitation despite such a heartfelt plea, and to do so in the name of rejecting “censorship”, is in my view to be guilty of self-seeking moral blindness.

Yours in sadness –
Raymond Deane


Open letter, Palestinian Students’ Campaign for the Academic Boycott of Israel

Defying appeal from Gaza students, Atwood set to accept Israeli prize

One last word. The cultural boycott of Israel is probably the most important aspect of the BDS campaign because it affects the perceptions and awareness of a great many people who otherwise are passive recipients of the ubiquitous propaganda spewed forth by the Zionist owned and/or controlled mainstream media and the bought and paid for politicians. But they are passionate about their artists, so when one of them declines an invitation to speak, receive an award or perform in Israel it gets their attention and adds significantly to the growing awareness of the nature of the fascist State of Israel and the dangers it poses not only to the Palestinians but to all of humanity.

Ms. Atwood can be reached at this address or through her publisher via email.
(Do send her a note and let her know how you feel)

Roger Tucker devotes himself to bringing about One Democratic State between the river and the sea, aka the One State Solution. He cane be reached at: Read other articles by Roger, or visit Roger's website.

28 comments on this article so far ...

Comments RSS feed

  1. hayate said on May 11th, 2010 at 12:44pm #

    If the klu klux klan offered a cultural award, these same people who claim a cultural boycott is censorship when it’s against israeli apartheid, would never accept the award if offered to them, and would speak out against it and the practices of the klu klux klan. Apparently to these people, israel, and zionists, should be exempt from the standards that everyone applies to others when making decisions on what is right and what is wrong.

  2. Deadbeat said on May 11th, 2010 at 3:46pm #

    I guess if the money and accolades comes from a “foundation” is it “cleaner” that it coming from a “corporation”. Tell that to Amy Goodman and Laura Flanders.

  3. mary said on May 12th, 2010 at 12:45am #

    I read this morning that Helena Cobban had said that Atwood’s work is all about the helplessness of women. ( )

    Not so in the case of the Palestinian women who have been managing to feed their families on lentil stews cooked on tinderwood fires whilst living in tents.

    Shortly a flotilla of ships and 600 people will embark on a voyage to Gaza with much needed supplies so that some homes can be rebuilt and some basic essentials for life supplied.

    Alice Walker has written this to wish them well –

    ‘Goddess Speed your boat. You are doing the work of The Collective as it attempts to bring Comfort, Support and Abiding Love and Solidarity to Itself. What you demonstrate is what we all, deep in our hearts, can know: We are One People, existing in one Love. The Gazans are us, living in a beleaguered place too small for us, dangerous for us, deadly for us. Just as the air connects us, so does this knowing wisdom of being one expression – human – of an infinitely creative Universe.

    I send you my blessings, my prayers for your safety, and my love.’

    Wake up Margaret and find your conscience. Do not follow the bloody footsteps of Blair by taking this filthy lucre.

  4. mary said on May 12th, 2010 at 8:37am #

    As it could be predicted, the israeli navy is rehearsing its plans to attack the flotilla. I would have thought that they didn’t need any further practice – they have rammed and nearly sunk one Free Gaza boat and have kidnapped three boats and held the crews and passengers in prison including Mairead Maguire and Cynthia McKinney.

    They also have daily practice of shooting at the Gaza fishing boats and fishermen.
    Report: Israel training to block Freedom Fleet

    The little charmer Barak is in charge. I can see him in his Admiral’s tricorn.

  5. Roger Tucker said on May 12th, 2010 at 12:03pm #

    Mary, thanks for the link. The Ma’an item will show up on my site (in Today’s Headlines) tomorrow.

  6. jon s said on May 12th, 2010 at 12:07pm #

    Do you have any doubt that if the Israeli Navy had wanted to , it could have sunk the “free Gaza ” boats, and killed everone on board?
    In any case there is little chance of the restrictions on Gaza being lifted as long as Cpl. Gilad Shalit is still being held , and in inhuman conditions, by the Hamas .

  7. dan e said on May 12th, 2010 at 12:58pm #

    do you have any doubt, that if the Izzy Navy had decided to ignore the possibility of any PR fallout, and did sink the Free Gaza boats & kill everyone on board, that “jon s” would have found a way to justify it?

    Oh, so one IOF terrorist is being held by Hamas? How many Palestinians are being held in “inhuman conditions” by the Zionist terror-state? I mean, besides the entire population of Gaza?

  8. jon s said on May 12th, 2010 at 2:00pm #

    Dan e, :”Izzy” – nice touch, gives you away as a bigot.
    On topic: I’ve never justified any immoral or stupid Israeli actions or policies. In fact I may have participated in more anti-war, anti-occupation, anti-settlements and pro-peace demos than anyone else on this forum.
    Gilad Shalit is an IDF soldier, honourably serving his country, not a terrorist. After having been taken prisoner he should be accorded his rights as a POW, until an exchange can take place.
    There are thousands of Palestinian prisoners held by Israel. Many Israelis feel that their conditions should be “equalized” to Shalit’s.

  9. Mulga Mumblebrain said on May 12th, 2010 at 11:28pm #

    You let your true nature shine through, sometimes, don’t you jon? So ‘many Israelis’ (citizens of a terrorist state that has practised mass and brutal torture of tens of thousands of prisoners for decades, and transmitted techniques for the torture of Arabs and Moslems to its partners in evil, the US) feel that Palestyinian prisoners’ conditions should be ‘equalized’ to Shalit’s. Of course we have no idea how Shalit, a terrorist in a terrorist army who was captured while he participated in Israel’s crimes against humanity in murdering defenceless civilians in Gaza and inflicting collective punishment through the siege there,is actually being treated. We just have your legendary omniscience to rely on. Shalit could, in all fairness, be tried by the Gazan authorities for his crimes against humanity. But I understand your point. You and the other Israeli fascists want the thousands of Palestinian prisoners,most illegally arrested, most tortured for no other reason than race hatred, to terrorise and intimidate the imprisoned Palestinian population and to slake the hideous, psychopathic impulses of their ‘Chosen’ torturers, and to recruit traitors and Quislings, to be treated even more vilely, if that is possible. Some ‘Leftist’!
    Israel breaks every rule of basic humanity and international law.It was decided at Nuremberg that ‘following orders’ was no defence for war crimes, even if ordered by fundamentalist Rabbis or God himself. And, jon, the propagators of hatred, the agitators who spread contempt, vilification and lies in order to incite terror and bloodshed were punished severely as well. I’d dearly love to see the armies of little Streichers and Goebbels who spread hatred, contempt and loathing of Gazans, Arabs and Moslems, and who have directly contributed to the decades long reign of terror, destruction, mass murder, particularly of hundreds of thousands of children, face justice, one day.

  10. mary said on May 13th, 2010 at 2:46am #

    This is a report which might chill Ms Atwood to the bone as much as the white phosphorus that the Israelis sent down upon Gaza which burnt the men, women and children to the bone.

    What is absolutely terrifying is this sentence –

    ‘Moreover, the presence of these metals in the weapons implies that they have been dispersed in the environment, in unknown amounts and range; they have been inhaled by the victims and by bystanders, thus constituting a risk for survivors and for people that were not directly hit by the bombing.’

    The winds know no boundaries, even Israel’s, just like the winds sweeping dust all around the Middle East and beyond that contains depleted uranium from the shells that were rained down on Iraq.

  11. jon s said on May 13th, 2010 at 7:26am #

    Just so that I’m not misunderstood: I wrote that “many Israelis think that the Palestinian prisoners conditions should be equalized to Shalit’s”. I didn’t mean that that’s my opinion. I don’t think that a democratic society can behave like a terrorist organization, in the same way that we expect law-enforcement organs not to behave like criminals.

  12. jon s said on May 13th, 2010 at 7:36am #

    Some info on Gilad Shalit:

  13. Roger Tucker said on May 13th, 2010 at 1:22pm #

    Ms. Atwood, I assume you have returned to home base from your sojourn to the Holy Land. Did the occupying power permit you to visit Gaza and other environs in the illegally Occupied Palestinian Territories? — or did it prohibit any such visit due to “concern” over your personal safety in light of the “terrorists” lurking behind every (bulldozed or incinerated) olive tree and rubbleized structure in the land? Did Mr. Ghosh, your co-awardee, perhaps accompany you?

    If you visited, I expect that you are developing and will publish widely and soon your perceptions of the conditions of oppression and immiseration assailing every Christian and Muslim of Palestine (minus quislings, of course), most vitally including illegally Occupied Gaza. I eagerly await your report. (I have no ready means of contacting Mr. Ghosh, but surely you established a communications link with him. Please encourage him to augment your findings by publishing his own perceptions to interested parties throughout the world.)

    It occurs to me to ask one other question: Might you have been provided unfettered access to meet and engage in discussions with any of the “sub-class” Palestinian-Israeli citizens of borderless Israel itself? I’m sure that a record of any such interaction and discourse would make an invaluable adjunct to your analysis and findings.

    Sincerely, in solidarity with justice and human rights…Robert H. Stiver

    —– Original Message —–
    From: Robert H Stiver
    To: ku.oc.nworbsitruCnull@enneiviV
    Sent: Sunday, May 09, 2010 12:19 AM
    Subject: Palestine: Defying appeal from Gaza students, Atwood set to accept Israeli prize

    Ms. Atwood, I deplore your decision to accept (today, I suppose, your time; it is just after midnight my time in Hawaii) a prize that should not be accepted by any humanitarian. I deplore that you did not heed the Gazan students’ searing and articulate plea to you of more than a month ago. I deplore that you continued to throw justice and a right course of action to the winds in your rejection of Mr. Raffoul’s reasoned appeal.

    I am particularly disturbed by your characterization of Zionist Israel’s six-decade program of cleansing the Holy Land of the Palestinians in terms of “…two desperate sides in a tragic and unequal conflict.” Ms. Atwood: the Zionists controlling Israel are not desperate. They are criminally psychotic, as anyone conducting an analytical study of the shocking destruction of Lebanon in 2006 and the frenzied wrecking of Gaza in Winter 2008-2009 would have to conclude. Ms. Atwood: the Zionists are completely uninterested in “…giv(ing) up their inflexible (position) and sit(ting) down at the negotiating table immediately and work(ing) out a settlement that would help the ordinary people who are suffering.” The only “settlement” the Zionists are interested in is illegal settlement (colonizing) activity in the Occupied West Bank and Occupied East Jerusalem. Ms. Atwood: It is completely unfair for you to saddle the Palestinians with the descriptor “inflexible”: after all, it was Mr. Arafat in 1988 who stated his willingness to accept a state for his unjustly treated people on a mere 22 percent of the land which was stolen from them in 1947. (In more recent days, Hamas has clearly signaled its acquiescence in President Arafat’s position, if such be the democratic will of the people of Palestine.)

    In great disappointment and sadness, I am Robert H. Stiver, Hawaii USA

  14. Mulga Mumblebrain said on May 14th, 2010 at 2:00am #

    I read your little site jon.There was the usual narcissistic, tribal, gibberish about Regev and Goldwasser being of ‘blessed memory’.Not to the Lebanese they’re not. Operatives in the Israeli Death Forces, they were captured on the Israel Lebanon border in an incident that was reported as an Israeli incursion, until the Zionist media changed the story to a Hezbollah ‘ambush’. There followed days of ferocious, cowardly and savage Israeli bombardment of Lebanon. As usual with these pitiless racist murderers, civilians were deliberately targeted, as were hospitals, schools, ambulances, mosques, power stations etc. The Israeli press bragged that this was ‘the best prepared war in Israeli history’, so the usual lies that this was all Hezbollah provocation were more than usually vicious and hypocritical, even for Zionists. In particular the Beirut suburb of Dahiya was targeted for obliteration, and the Israeli Death Forces have bragged that they will inflict this ‘Dahiya Doctrine’ of complete destruction on the whole of Lebanon next time they commit an aggression. The Israeli Death Forces, however, were bested, man to man, by Hezbollah, which so offended the Herrenvolk’s hypertrophied sense of racial superiority that their parting shot was they scuttled back to Israel was to litter south Lebanon with millions of cluster bomblets, weapons that kill, particularly children, for years.
    In the midst of this ‘carefully planned’ orgy of racist brutality and murderousness, the Yesha Council of Rabbis and Torah Sages, an important body of fundamentalist hatemongering religious leaders, revealed the mentality behind this and every other Israeli atrocity against humanity. They decreed that, according to Judaic religious law, killing civilians was not only permissible, but a ‘mitzvah’ or good deed. Other religious fascists in Israel have subsequently published books that outline the religious doctrine that killing children is similarly acceptable,if it can be argued that they would have grown to oppose the Jews.
    Even more repulsively and viciously, this horror state, that worships brutality and cowardly, callous murder, is seeking to impose its perverted religious doctrine of child murder onto the rest of humanity. A campaign is underway, under the wider rubric of ‘lawfare’, not only to change international humanitarian law so that civilians can be made legitimate targets, thus satisfying the bloodthirsty ‘Rabbis and Torah Sages’of the religious Right, but to declare the Israeli Death Forces murderers who carry out this sanctified child murder as ‘civilians in uniform’, and hence criminalise resistance to them. And the weight of Jewish money power and control of Western politics and the media is being brought to bear in this evil project. Moreover the same forces are moving to criminalise criticism of this racist horror state, no doubt with sentences as vastly disproportionate and vicious as those dished ought to the protestors against the Gaza slaughter in London, or the contributors to Palestinian charities sentenced to decades of gaol in the US, after persecution by prosecution teams composed of Zionist fanatics and secret evidence admitted from anonymous, disguised, Israeli Shin Bet operatives.
    This of course is the reality overlooked with contempt by jon et al with their deeply racist and narcissistic bleating about Shalit.He is one Israeli prisoner-of-war, captured while a part of a gigantic exercise in collective punishment,the blockade and destruction of Gaza, that is contrary to international law. As such his fate, I believe, should be to be put on trial for crimes against humanity, and given a sentence that fits the crime. While Shalit lingers, thousands of Palestinians are imprisoned, women and children included, some for decades, some in secret prisons unknown even to the Red Cross. As we know most are tortured. Their fate elicits no interest from ‘Leftist’ jon because these are untermenschen with souls closer to those of animals than those of Jews, if I may paraphrase Rabbi Kook the Elder. There are also reams of easily discoverable quotes from various fascist, racist, Jews, Israeli and otherwise, that one Jewish fingernail is worth more than all the Arabs etc. The sordid truth is that those Jews who put their Jewishness before their humanity, who, alas, seem a great majority of Jews these days, regard the Palestinians, Arabs and Moslems as little better than vermin who may be exterminated at will, and they are increasingly deranged in their fury at being resisted in their Holy Work of being rid of them and establishing their lovely little Judaic apartheid state.

  15. mary said on May 14th, 2010 at 3:41am #

    All credit to Roger Tucker for his work on Atwood here. She appears to have no conscience or feelings. Roger is fortunate to live in Mexico far away from the stench of Washington and London.

    Mulga you are correct. I was at home when the Israeli onslaught on Lebanon was taking place. Sky News were carrying live transmissions and their reporters were delirious with excitement as the bombs descended on Beirut and Tyre. The Israeli IDF goons were seen lining up their tracked vehicles on the border as they awaited instructions. They smoked, laughed and chatted nonchantly as if what they were about to do was completely normal. It was the first time that I had watched something like this ‘live’ so to speak. It was shocking. Margaret Becket was Foreign Secretary then. She was just one in the list of the Zionist supporting NuLabour cadre and she never made a peep until the ‘operation’ was complete so to speak.

    We now have the little squirt William Hague (aged 59 but with the appearance of Adrian Mole aged 13¾ of diary fame) in that job.. At the same time that the Clegg/Cameron chimera appointed him, a foregone conclusion, he was banging the war drums for an attack on Iran. He is off to Washington within days to receive his instructions from the ‘shill on the Hill’, our Hillary. Obomber has already given his to Cameroon on the blower. Cameroon will be visiting the US in July with or without his telegenic and pregnant wife Samantha. She is giving up her ‘top job’ (as one gushing journo put it) as creative director of a luxury goods firm who sell handbags and the like for over £1k. Meantime plans are being drafted to shaft the rest of us so that the deficit, arising from the US banking scams and which we didn’t create, can be repaid. Cameroon’s banker friends and financial supporters will go scot free.

    PS jon s is just like one of those old 78 rpm shellac records. When the needle hit the scratch, it kept repeating and repeating the same little piece of the recording. The Shalit site (very Israeli blue and in your face) makes great play on that ‘When the Shark and the Fish….’ stuff. Wasn’t there some accusation of plagiarism from an author about that?

  16. jon s said on May 14th, 2010 at 7:25am #

    Advance notice: Tomorrow evening -after remaining silent far too long – the Israeli Left will be holding a mass demonstration against the Netanyahu-Lieberman-Barak government, especially the continuing settlement policy. We’ll be demonstrating in Zion Circle, in Jerusalem, which the Right considers their home turf. It will be important to see how many show up? will the dominant presence be the radicals or the moderates? what will the media coverage look like?
    For all peace/Left activists in the area: let’s all be there, it’s time to hit the streets again!

  17. mary said on May 15th, 2010 at 12:18am #

    Advance notice: MV Rachel Corrie sets sail from Cork, Eire towards Gaza facing publicized threats from the terror state including military action.

  18. Mulga Mumblebrain said on May 15th, 2010 at 1:44am #

    mary, if you want to see what the human, decent and sane fraction of humanity is up against (for the umpteenth time) just peruse the contribution of Melanie Phillips in today’s ‘The Australian’, the house-sheet of Australian Zionazis. In my opinion this creature is not only deranged but expresses that so common feature of Zionist ultras, spiritual evil, so floridly that you would almost imagine her caterwauling to be a crude and cruel attempt at parody. She denies anthropogenic climate change with some crass falsehoods, sub-moronic, real Dunning-Kruger territory if she actually believes them. She sticks her nose, with what in my opinion is her innate racist viciousness, into the tragedy of the Stolen Generations in Australia. She quotes Windschuttle, in my opinion nothing but an apostle of ranting hate propaganda, and hence a darling of our local Right, and, apparently,not without his admirers amongst racists overseas. If you have a strong stomach, you will find, I believe, that you will share my opinion that his descriptions of Aboriginal Australians are as viciously racist as the very worst Zionazi depictions of Palestinians, Arabs and Moslems. It is amazing how Rightwing racists find succour in the hatemongering of others of their type. She takes awhile to get to her preroration, a psychotic,lying rant about Israel being attacked over and over again by its exterminationist neighbours, an inversion of the truth so wicked, so arrogant, so blatant that only a Zionazi could make it. While reading this foul diatribe of lies, hatred and,above all else, vicious, rampant racism, I felt both the usual outrage at the lies, but the equally familiar despond at the realisation that these creatures are not isolated, derided figures of deserved contempt, but the standard bearers of a gigantic empire of racist hatemongering and vilification, whose role is to mobilise their boundless resources of hatred to propagandise Western publics to prepare them for yet further wars of mass murder and the establishment of a global apartheid system, all to enrich one tiny,infinitely avaricious stratum of Western societies. As I’ve said elsewhere, I hope and pray that one day these foul emanations of evil will face the same justice that Streicher did and Goebbels surely would have, for the crime of inciting hatred to prepare the ground for murder and aggression.

  19. mary said on May 15th, 2010 at 2:17am #

    She is not in my list of faves Mulga! She is a shocker and married to Joshua Rosenberg who is always on the BBC giving his opinion on matters of law, but never any concerning Israel needless to say. They both get more than their fair share of the airwaves. She is a regular on a Radio 4 programme called the Moral Maze. What more can I say? Orwell lives.

    Surprisingly the other night in Question Time (a BBC opportunity show for the right wing to proselytise) she said that the new coalition of Cleggover/Cameroon was a squalid grab for power and an assault on our ‘democacy’ whatever that is when it’s at home.

    PS Have you seen Samson and Delilah? I found it very moving and also very sad in the way that it illustrated the dreadful treatment the Australians have given to their indigenous people. John Pilger is excellent on the subject as you know. I will have to look up this Windschuttle.

  20. mary said on May 15th, 2010 at 5:51am #

    Nacht und Nebel is alive and well in Israhell. There have been 100 applications for gagging orders alone this year. The disappeared.

    Israel’s Disappeared


    At first it seemed bizarre. Israel slapped a blanket gag order to prevent media coverage of the May 6 arrest of Ameer Makhoul, a prominent Palestinian citizen of Israel who heads Ittijah, a coalition of 64 major civil society organizations. Yet in no time at all the news had shot round the world, and Facebook pages were up calling for his freedom and for a demonstration in Haifa to demand his release.

    So is there a point to such gag orders? It turns out there is. Unlike Makhoul’s case, the news about some arrestees remains unknown for weeks. As people mobilized for Makhoul, reports began to surface about another Palestinian citizen of Israel, Omar Said, who was arrested on April 25 on his way to Jordan.


  21. Mulga Mumblebrain said on May 15th, 2010 at 10:06am #

    mary, the Stolen Generations Report was the greeted in this country by a tirade of racist abuse and lying,led by Rupert Moloch’s evil rag ‘The Australian’.The report had been years in the making, most time taken up by agitation for its establishment, eventually by Labor in 1995. The Report was handed down in 1997 after the extreme racist John Howard had become PM.Its contents were leaked to the Rightwing media, almost certainly by the Howardites, and immediately that it was released it was subjected to a villainous campaign of abuse and lies from the racist Right.
    The entire episode of decades of exterminationist abused designed to facilitate the disappearance of the Aboriginal race was simply denied, just as the Right simply denies anthropogenic climate change or Israel and the US’s crimes.Lying is,of course,a prime characteristic of Rightwing psychopaths, who can get away with it because, through creatures like Moloch, they control the mainstream media. Relentless lying and foul, personal vilification, are also, I believe it is plain, stocks-in-trade of Zionists like Phillips. The racism involved in the reaction to the Stolen Generations is exactly congruent with the racism of Zionism, so it comes as no surprise that Phillips, who I think is about as poisonous as human beings come, would nail her sordid colours to this mast. Howard and his media mates used race hatred for Aborigines to garner votes from racists, a considerable segment of the Australian population. As with all Rightwing regimes, Howard’s utilised the stoking of hatred, against Aborigines, refugees, Moslems, gays, environmentalists, unionists, welfare recipients etc, not only to garner votes but because hatred is the existential fuel of the Rightwinger. They cannot live without hating something, generally anything unlike themselves, in Howard’s case vicious,little, White, bald men.
    The stories contained in the Stolen Generation Report were heart-rending. Families destroyed, mothers who never stopped mourning, children delivered to abusive priests and laity or cruelly exploited as little slaves. Lives blighted forever by lack of love and consequent failure to maintain loving relations. Yet none of this stopped the Right branding all this evidence, mountains of it, as lies or even ‘false memories’. Another feature of Rightwing psychopathy was here on display, the total lack of human empathy. I’m not in any manner surprised to see an arch Zionist join such an evil and pitilessly cruel racist crusade- it suits their mentality like a glove. Needless to say, Howard is a fanatic Zionist himself.

  22. Roger Tucker said on May 15th, 2010 at 6:56pm #

    I’m guessing that some contributors to this thread might be interested in a new project of mine. The basic idea is to publish a weekly newsletter advocating One Democratic State. Like the MoveOn and Avaaz projects, the idea is to publish this to a mass audience. If you’re interested, just let me know. I should, however, make it clear that this is something for activists, not mere onlookers. You would be expected to roll up your sleeves and go to work.

  23. mary said on May 16th, 2010 at 2:36pm #

    If you can be bothered to read it, this is the joint acceptance speech by Atwood and Ghosh. Shame on them both.

  24. jon s said on May 16th, 2010 at 2:58pm #

    Thanks, Mary, I think Atwood and Ghosh’s speech was eloquent and thoughtful, very well put.

  25. mary said on May 16th, 2010 at 11:57pm #

    Nahida is an exiled Palestinian woman now living in the UK. She has produced this powerful piece to commemorate the 62nd anniversary of Al Nakba, 15th May 1948.

  26. Roger Tucker said on May 17th, 2010 at 12:06am #

    Thanks, Mary. It will be up on my site tomorrow night (tonight :)).


  27. mary said on June 4th, 2010 at 12:33am #

    Has she seen the ‘light’ Roger or is she just a hypocrite and a greedy woman who has Dan David’s shekels safely stuffed up her jumper?

  28. Roger Tucker said on June 4th, 2010 at 12:42pm #

    Neither, I think, Mary. What we’re looking at is a basic human failing, self-deception. Martin Luther, whatever else one might think of him, had some interesting insights. The one that has always fascinated me was his statement that “reason is a whore.” Ms. Atwood’s view of the matter is a perfect illustration.

    Now that she has taken an interest in the subject, I think that our dear Margaret sees an opportunity to burnish her credentials as a “reasonable” and empathetic humanist. The early Zionists, who were hard-boiled realists about most things, except of course the sanity of their basic premise, would have immediately recognized her as what they called a “useful idiot.”

    The bottom line of Zionism is the legitimacy of the idea of a Jewish State in Palestine. Expect her to become a darling of J Street and Michael Lerner and other “progressive” Zionists. As the situation deteriorates, these folks will push harder and harder for the Two State Solution, which would lead to even greater disaster than what we’ve seen already.