ModernityBlog

“Nearly all men can stand adversity, but if you want to test a man’s character, give him power.” Abraham Lincoln

Posts Tagged ‘Guest Post

Professor Gibbs, Failure To Address The Issues.

with 7 comments

I finally got around to reading all of the 339+ comments on David Gibbs’ guest post and I must say I am disappointed.

I like academic discussions normally.

I appreciate clever people making intelligent points and I confess to being a fan of Engage, where some witty or informative exchanges are to be found. I had hoped that this guest post would be equally sharp and illuminating, sadly it is not.

Professor Gibbs seems to have made a conscious choice not to address the criticism of his work in any significant way.
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Guest Post On Save the Children.

with 14 comments

A guest post by Evelyn.

“The Guardian and Comment is Free are known for their predilection for Israel-bashing and anti-Israel bias. This is usually most blatant on Comment is Free, but on 29th January 2010 the Guardian itself published an article as part of its “Child’s Eye ” series about the ongoing fears of two young Palestinian girls, as a result of their experiences during Cast Lead. My attention was first drawn to this article by CiF Watch. I was particularly interested in the short film within it.

The Child’s Eye series is an interesting and heart rending one which at first sight appears to examine the suffering of children all over the world. A closer examination reveals that among the series are four articles about children in Gaza, but (not surprisingly given that this is the Guardian), none at all about the experiences of the children of Sderot or elsewhere in southern Israel as a result of eight years of shelling.

Medusa, the CiF Watch article’s author, made this point and highlighted the lack of context for the children’s suffering in that particular Guardian article and that there was no mention of the role of Hamas in exacerbating it. This lack of context is not unusual of course, but Medusa also noted how the film’s subtitles translate the seated woman near the beginning of the video as saying “Israelis” when she is really saying “yahud,” which means “Jew” in Arabic.

I decided to investigate further and found out that the film was made by Save the Children, published online by the Guardian without acknowledgement. You are invited to visit Save the Children’s web page for an overview of where its sympathies lie. The suffering of children in Gaza extensively is indeed heart rending, but from my reading of its page, I could find scarcely a mention of the suffering of the children of Sderot.

Save the Children used the film I have referred to above for its fundraising. I believed when I first saw it that it was misleading but did not realise exactly how insidiously dishonest was the deliberate mistranslation of “Jew” into “Israeli”, or how lacking in sensitivity was Save the Children to the offence it was causing until I had had the following exchange of emails with their Customer Service Adviser in their Supporter Innovation and Development Department.

Mine to Save the Children on 1st February at 10.15am:

Dear Sirs

“However, we know that there may be times when we do not meet our own high standards. When this does happen we want to hear about it, deal with the situation as quickly as possible and put measures in place to stop it happening again. “ (From Save the Children’s complaints section on its web page)

Well, I am taking you very much at your word. I feel distinctly uncomfortable that, as well as involving yourselves in politics in the Middle East – when any charity should be impartial – you actually seem to be promoting antisemitism in the video at the following link:

http://www.youtube.com/user/savethechildrenuk#p/u/3/rTKYNc0VYJE

At around 1.14 the mother says “Yahood” and at 2.23 seconds in the video, the young girl says, “Yahood” too. I know Arabic, and “Yahood” in Arabic, means “Jew.” Did you translate it as “Israeli” because you didn’t want to appear antisemitic? This was rather dishonest, since what the mother and daughter say bears out what many Israelis believe, that Palestinian Gazans do not differentiate between Israel and her Jewish people.

And incidentally, the closure of the borders is not a blockade and it is dishonest of you to refer to it as such in your promotional video. It is an embargo on commodities which Hamas confiscates in order to construct rockets with which it bombs southern Israel.

Your film makes it seem that Israel woke up suddenly one morning and decided to attack Gaza. You compound your bad faith when you fail to put the Gaza War into any context.

The Guardian has used your video, without acknowledging its source, to further its own anti-Israel crusade. I am glad that I have found you out. I am a pensioner with little money to spare and I need to allocate my charity funds wisely. Suffice it to say, I shall not be supporting the efforts of Save the Children, which asks for money whilst telling lies, but to another charity which I know will provide aid to ALL children affected by Cast Lead.

Yours sincerely

The reply from Save the Children:
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Written by modernityblog

19/02/2010 at 13:46

Guest Post by Karl Pfeifer

with 3 comments

Regular readers of Searchlight and anti-fascists will know Karl Pfeifer.

Karl is a member of the board of control of the Documentation Centre of Austrian Resistance (DÖW), Vienna correspondent of the Budapest weekly, Hetek.

I am extremely pleased to be able to publish one of his articles as a guest post:

Szaniszló: “Hungarians God’s chosen people” By Karl Pfeifer

It is a real pity that Hungarian is such a difficult language. [1] Watching the Budapest extreme-right Echo TV in 2010 and listening to the monologue of Ferenc Szaniszló, I thought Colonel Blimp was reborn in the Carpathian basin.

The only difference was, he didn’t speak English but Hungarian and he had no moustache. But it was the same form of Jingoism, added to that, nonsense dressed up as scientific fact plus coded antisemitism.

Ferenc Szaniszló was sent during the Brezhnev time to study journalism in Moscow and became a correspondent of the government daily “Magyar Hirlap” in the Soviet Union. And like so many Hungarian journalists, who were loyal scribblers during communism, he later became a turncoat and joined the right-wing choir.

In his monologue, he informs the public that the Hungarians are God’s chosen people.

“We Sumerians, Scythes, Etruscans, Celts, Huns, or Hungarians have suffered because of our being chosen. […] Those who are envious, our occupiers […] in reality are looking for the elixir, how they could become Hungarians, how they could participate in our secrets, in the advantages of our being chosen.”

In the context of his rant, it is clear what he is implying, that Jews have occupied Hungary or are about to occupy it. A legend that many Hungarians seem to believe. Szaniszló then goes on to rave about the special conditions of the Carpathian basin and of Hungary, where all the enemies suffer defeat.

In reality, Hungary was defeated during the First World War and repeated its mistake when it joined Hitler during the Second Word War. Hungary was for decades occupied by the Red Army.

Szaniszló tells an incredible story, that there is a special radiation against the enemies of the Hungarian people in the Carpathian basin and that the Soviet occupiers in Hungary got special payment for that.

To me it looks like part of an attempt to brainwash the Hungarian people.

Of course, after the coming election in April 2010 the terrible awakening will happen.

The right-wing believe that all they have to do is to blame the Jews to be the cause of all the trouble, by inciting people against an abstract object “The Jew”, and in doing so hoodwink the Hungarians. The mythical target of “The Jew” conceals the otherwise obvious fact that a racist interpretation of Hungary’s problems bears little relationship to reality.

It should not come as any surprise as to how low the level of such right-wing journalism in Hungary has sunk, but that Szaniszló succeeds in proving that he is of the lowest intellectual and political calibre.


1. For those who understand Hungarian I recommend watching Szaniszló.

Written by modernityblog

23/01/2010 at 03:33

Guesting at CifWatch.

with one comment

I have a guest post up at CifWatch.

Written by modernityblog

25/08/2009 at 22:10

Guesting At HP.

with 4 comments

A few reflections in a guest post at HP.

Written by modernityblog

16/07/2009 at 20:41

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