Tuesday, October 16, 2007

More Israeli TV Commercials

By Noam Rotem
Local cellular carrier Cellcom advertises it’s new on-the-second billing where you only pay for the exact amount of seconds you talked. Ad includes quintessentially Israeli scenes depicting of how when ones says: “just a second” they don’t literally mean a second. The tag being: in life, not always is a second really a second but at cellcom it really is

Back in Passover local cellular carrier Pelephone ran a seasonal ad for surprise prizes for all its customers for the holiday. Playing off of the Passover tradition where children search for the Afikoman towards the end of the Seder, which are then redeemed for prizes by the Seder host. The ad is accompanied by a Ladino rendition of one of the children songs from the Passover Seder.

In a more recent Pelephone summer campaign for free sms’s from abroad to Israel--provides reason enough for an EL AL flight to turn around with the tagline being: looking for an excuse to return abroad ...?

Finally the local McDonald’s franchise pokes fun at Israeli taxis driver’s English skills by having one call up to ask how do you say McDonald’s in English (it’s the same in Hebrew) in order to promote their freshly cut Arabic style salad now to be found at your local Israeli McDonald’s

Saturday, October 13, 2007

Ahmadinejad's September UN Visit

By Noam Rotem
Last month I was in NY and went down with my family to attend the Jewish protest rally against Iranian president Ahmadinejad's UN visit. The bulk of the protesters were students from New York-area Jewish day schools, many of those being modern orthodox. But there were also representatives from every major Jewish organization along with Christian supporters of Israel.

Some of the most effective words spoken vis-a-vis the hypocrisy behind Holocaust denying Ahmadinejad's invitation to speak at Columbia University came from former Israeli PM Benjamin Netanyahu on a FOX News interview where he exposed Columbia University's disingenuousness by posing a question along the following analogy:

Can anyone imagine Columbia University (or the UN for that matter) inviting and providing an open stage for some hypothetical African despot, who has a record for repeatedly denying the historical truth of the African slave trade and repeatedly threatening to wipe off the face of the earth another African nation?
The question is rendered rhetorical given Columbia University's disingenuousness--reinforced by its past record of rejecting the free speech rights of ROTC recruiters, yet not of Holocaust deniers!?

Newt Gingrich also weighed in on this matter poignantly pointing out the persecution of gays and women who are the primary targets of criminal sentencing in Iran for adultery which can end in death by hanging or by stoning!

Why are so many left liberals, silent on these basic and crucial human rights issues when it comes to Arab and Muslim dictatorships, yet Israel with by and large progressive western conduct and liberal policies toward gays and women remains the center of their relentless, biased and unfair condemnations? Tel Aviv Vistas' position on this matter is that this is the manifestation of the new anti-Semitism.

It should be noted that in countries such as Iran, Saudi Arabia, Yemen, Oman and the United Arab Emirates, homosexuality is punishable by death. Additionally, in Bahrain, Lebanon, Kuwait, Qatar and Syria, homosexual acts can result in jail time...

Some Tel-Aviv Vista exclusive photos and video from the demonstration opposite the UN:

Tuesday, October 2, 2007

Leading Media Organizations Along with Several Independent Investigations Conclude that Muhammad al-Durah was not shot by Israeli Soldiers

Respected media organizations like the Wall Street Journal, CBS News, Atlantic Monthly and Commentary magazine have published detailed investigations that all conclude that the footage was either staged or simply edited to show something that didn’t happen.

On October 2, 2002, a German television documentary film by Esther Schapira called Three Bullets and a Dead Child: Who Shot Muhammad al-Durah? was broadcast, and concluded that IDF bullets could not have killed Al-Durah.

Independent Israeli physicists have separately proven mathematically and physically that the IDF forces on the ground could not see al-Durah and his father from their outpost and that it was physically impossible for their bullets to have killed al-Durah. Moreover, some of the evidence even indicates the not unlikely possibility that al-Durah’s death might have been staged

The full investigative report below as it appears on the ZOA site: Was Muhammad Al-Durah's Alleged Killing A Staged Fraud By Palestinians?

September 04, 2007
Contact: Morton A. Klein, 212-481-1500
ZOA: France-2 TV must release entire 27-minute footage

New York -- The Zionist Organization of America (ZOA) is calling upon France-2 Television network to release the full, never before publicly broadcast, 27 minutes of footage surrounding the alleged killing of a Palestinian Arab boy, Muhammad al-Durah, on September 30, 2000 at Netzarim junction in order to clarify whether the boy’s alleged killing was a staged Palestinian propaganda incident. Al-Durah’s alleged death was filmed by a local Palestinian cameraman, Tala Abu Rahma, and a mere 55 seconds of selected footage from his 27 minutes of filming became the basis for a story by France-2’s correspondent, Charles Enderlin, who had not been present on the scene at the time. The 55 seconds of footage shows al-Durah and his father seeking cover during a crossfire between an Israel Defense Forces (IDF) outpost and Palestinian police and gunmen, who were shooting from 7 main locations, including the towers behind the Israeli post, and the boy later slumped over, allegedly dead. The broadcast, basing itself on Abu Rahma’s words, claimed that the boy was shot by Israeli troops. Enderlin’s story, which France-2 provided free of charge to the rest of the international media, led to world-wide accusations against Israel that the boy had been deliberately killed by IDF during a shoot out with Palestinian Authority (PA) forces.

The edited 55-second al-Durah footage was shown repeatedly worldwide and particularly on Arab television networks, resulting in a wave of hatred and terror directed against Israel and Israelis. On October 12, two IDF soldiers, Yosef Avrahami and Vadim Novesche, who had mistakenly wandering into PA-controlled territory, were murdered, their bodies disemboweled beyond recognition and their entrails passed around and literally chewed and swallowed at a PA police station in Ramallah after they mistakenly wandered into PA-controlled territory. The mob invoked Durah’s death as a justification for its barbarism.

The Orr Commission, which investigated the violent rioting by Israeli Arabs in October 2000, concluded in its final report that “Muhammad al-Durra’s picture, which was distributed by the media, was one of the causes that led people in the Arab sector to take to the streets on October 1, 2000.” Also, the Mitchell report, drafted in May 2001 by a joint U.S.-European committee, also noted that the al-Durah incident was one of the events that sparked the Palestinian Arab violence.

Additionally, innumerable suicide bombers and other Palestinian terrorists have cited al-Durah as a justification for their crimes. In June 2005, a 21-year old Palestinian Arab woman, Wafa Samir al-Bis, who was stopped on her way to blow herself up and kill as many Israeli children as possible at the Soroka Medical Center in Beersheba, acknowledged that she specifically wanted to kill children in revenge for the death of Mohammad al-Durah. Moreover, al-Durah is prominently featured in al-Qaeda recruitment videos and on Hizballah banners. The murderers of Wall Street Journal ‘s Daniel Pearl interspersed their video of his beheading with the France-2 film. Throughout Europe, and particularly in France, Muslims have used al-Durah as a rallying cry in their attacks against Jews, which broke out shortly after the Durah film was broadcast ( Jerusalem Post, October 23, 2006).

For the past six years, PA television has continuously aired a film showing al-Durah in heaven beckoning other Palestinian children to “martyr” themselves by becoming terrorists so that they can join him in paradise. Postage stamps bearing his crouched image have been issued in Jordan, Egypt and Tunisia, a street in Baghdad and a square in Morocco bear his name, while many schools across the Arab world are named after him. His image has even been reproduced on a designer dress in Saudi Arabia.

However, the accusation that Israeli forces deliberately targeted a boy (and his father), whom they had clearly seen is debunked by investigations and evidence that has already come to light, and which suggests even that al-Durah’s death did not occur, including the following:

  • The 55 seconds of Abu Rahma’s footage that was publicly broadcast does not show al-Durah dying or any bloodstains where the boy and his father were crouched, nor any ambulance evacuating them.
  • No autopsy was ever performed on Muhammad’s body.
  • In the weeks that followed the event, physicists Nahum Shachaf and Yosef Doriel conducted investigations on behalf of the IDF’s Southern Command. Both men separately proved mathematically and physically that the IDF forces on the ground could not see al-Durah and his father from their outpost and that it was physically impossible for their bullets to have killed al-Durah.
  • 3 hours of raw footage from Reuters and Associated Press taken at the vicinity at the time show dozens of Palestinian boys attacking Israeli guards posts with stones, Molotov cocktails and projectiles, appliances etc. Yet, if the IDF had wanted to deliberately kill children, it could have easily done so yet none were killed and al-Durah was the only one allegedly killed on the scene.
  • The few people who have been allowed to watch Rahma’s entire film have stated that it is impossible to conclude that al-Durah was killed because he is shown in this unpublicized footage to be raising his elbow and right leg, turning his head and looking around furtively, then putting his head and elbow back in position, but leaving his leg suspended in air ( FrontPageMag.com , August 29, 2007).
  • Al-Durah’s father was allegedly wounded in the arm elbow and leg -- but no blood appears in the footage.
  • The cameraman, Talal Abu Rahma, claims that the IDF were firing for an astonishing 45 minutes at al-Durah and his father which is not only absurd but, if true, would have resulted in many wounds, bloodstains and bullet marks that are simply not present in the footage.
  • The al-Durahs were sheltering from gunfire behind a concrete wall and barrel not visible to IDF soldiers in the guard post from which they were allegedly shot and on which there are no bullet marks ( FrontPageMag.com, August 29, 2007).
  • Respected media organizations like the Wall Street Journal, CBS News, Atlantic Monthly and Commentary magazine have published detailed investigations that all conclude that the footage was either staged or simply edited to show something that didn’t happen.
  • On October 2, 2002, a German television documentary film by Esther Schapira called Three Bullets and a Dead Child: Who Shot Muhammad al-Durah? was broadcast, and concluded that IDF bullets could not have killed Al-Durah.

According to the cameraman, Abu Rahmeh, Mohammad bled for 20 minutes. But, in the film clip broadcast the world over, and in the additional 3 seconds not commonly seen by television viewers, there are no signs of blood on the Al Durahs, on the wall behind them, nor on the ground.

The findings of this German documentary and other investigations shown that, at a minimum, the probability that the IDF killed al-Durah is virtually nil and, more likely, the event was either staged or edited to lead to the false conclusion that al-Durah had been killed by Israeli forces. Yet France-2 refuses to release the full 27 minutes of its own footage to public scrutiny and has sued three French Jews who accused them in various ways of manufacturing a blood libel against Israel by purposely distorting the events at Netzarim junction that day.

ZOA National President Morton A. Klein said, “It is past time that France-2 stop hiding behind legal action aimed at penalizing those who have questioned the veracity of its report that misleadingly lead the world to believe that Israeli forces deliberately killed this Palestinian child, if in fact al-Durah was killed at all. Even without seeing the full 27 minutes of France-2 footage, which it has simply refused to publicly release, it is already clear that it is highly unlikely, if not in fact impossible, that IDF bullets killed al-Durah (again, if in fact he was killed).

“This staging of a phony murder and lying about Israeli killings of Palestinians would be nothing new for the PA. It is has been demonstrated on several occasions that the PA and other terror groups have deliberately staged propaganda incidents involving non-existent massacres, like the one that supposedly occurred at Jenin in April 2002 in which PA officials claimed that 5,000, then 1,000, then 500 Palestinian civilians had been killed. (In fact, 52 Palestinians, at least 30 of them combatants, were killed in the heart of a civilian area in a ground battle which also claimed the lives of 23 Israeli soldiers).

The PA has been known to present live bodies as corpses and stage armed confrontations in collaboration with sympathetic media. Or, to give another example, the Lebanese terrorist group Hizballah last year mounted an elaborate hoax in which an ambulance was made to appear as if it had been deliberately targeted by Israeli forces, only this hoax was quickly exposed. Or in June 2006, when a girl, Hoda Ghalia, was killed with six other members of her family on a Gaza beach in an explosion for which the PA accused Israel although the IDF had not been conducting any military operations in the area. It has also been reported that Palestinians have been filmed on stretchers taken to and from ambulances, with the supposed casualties then climbing off unhurt when the news cameras have left the scene.

“As this particular incident was not exposed in a timely manner and has been shown to have inspired further acts of terror against Israelis and other Westerners, we call upon France-2 Television to come clean by releasing the entire footage so that all can make an informed judgment on the events at Netzarim junction on September 30, 2000. It is deeply suspicious that France-2, if it believes its story to have been correct and truthful, has refused until now to release the footage which ought to back up its case, and has instead attempted to silence and penalize those who have raised legitimate and searching questions about its story. We also urge all American Jewish organizations to call upon France-2 to release the footage.”