Monday, May 15, 2006

"ISRAEL A SHITTY LITTLE COUNTRY"

No, no, no, calm down. These are not my words nor are they words I endorse in any way, shape or form. No, this is the headline of a blogpost which you can find here.

The post starts like this:
Got this over email this evening - thaught [sic] it might be good to pass it along. It's a little long but everyone [sic] of these facts is interesting by themselves - all together - it looks preatty [sic] good - not bad for a Banana republic:

HERE ARE SOME FACTS ONLY from many more they only can envy and be jealous of, and some of the real reasons why they can not accept us as more gifted then [sic] them and why they continuously try to [...]


There then follows a long list of Israel's achievements, before the author of the blogpost concludes:
. . . . AND WHEN THE FRENCH AMBASSADOR IN ENGLAND SAYS, what others also think: "ISRAEL IS NOTHING BUT A SHITTY LITTLE COUNTRY" Makes one wonder, "Who are really in truth the people full of shitty heads [sic] and soles [sic], or culture!?"


The part on the French Ambassador was what seriously alarmed me. Could it be that a European top-ranking diplomat had made such a colossal gaffe? Was it possible I had somehow missed this on the news? Immediate googling, using also the Blogsearch (beta) facility yielded nothing. The latter unearthed only the blogpost in question.

It seemed very unusual to me that the article provided no references to its source and didn't mention names, places or dates. Nothing, nada, zilch...

So I decided to ask for clarification via the blog's comment section. One of the blog's team members (but not the author) then came up with this little gem:
Gert,
I tried to find a credible source but all I could find was the BBC, so you will have to forgive me.

"Anti-Semitic" French Envoy under fire


Turns out that the "shitty little country" story is almost certainly a canard and one that dates back to 2001! There appears to be no evidence that Mr Bernard actually ever said anything like that. Conrad Black has in the mean time compromised himself rather plentifully (but that doesn't constitute proof either).

Yet the author presents the story as fact and recent fact at that. Very misleading to say the least. Could it be that the blogowners are a little trigger-happy when it comes to looking for anti-Semitism?

Keywords:
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9 Comments:

At 8:16 PM, Blogger Oleh Yahshan said...

gert,
talk about taking something out of context!

The entire piece had to do with what Israel has accomplished in the past 60 years and the remark was a side piece even if it was in the headline.

and so what if it was said in 2001? I was not in any place portraying the statement as news!

oh ya but he didn't really say it -
as quoted in the article (that you and I - both linked to)
" Mr Bernard has not denied the remark. Initially he said he could not remember making it, but later insisted that what he said had been thoroughly distorted.

He says he is outraged that a private discussion found its way into the media, but has made clear he does not intend to apologise. "

and even if he hadn't said it - it would not change the rest of the post or what is written in it.

in the future I will try to find more up to date remarks from my foes and not go to ancient History of 2001!

 
At 9:34 AM, Blogger Wolfie said...

That's quite a list of achievement there but didn't one get left off?

Pathological Narcissism.

 
At 10:13 AM, Blogger Oleh Yahshan said...

wolfie,
I thought it was on the list, you must have missed it.

do you want me to apologize for the list? or maybe remove it?? will it make you feel better not knowing the good stuff that Israel has done in the last 58 years??

 
At 1:43 PM, Blogger Wolfie said...

Oleh Old Chap,

You can apologise for the list if you like, I didn't ask you to but don't be surprised if it doesn't have the effect that you desire as it is rather reminiscent of people who frame their diplomas and put them on their living-room wall having no idea how visitors laugh about it behind their back. Educated people are well aware of what has been achieved by Israel but I think you will generally find in the wider world people admire humility in talented people far more than self-adoration.

It reminds me of the joke :

Q: What is a genius?
A: An average student with a Jewish Mother.

Lighten-up Oleh.

 
At 2:09 PM, Blogger Oleh Yahshan said...

wolfie,
I see your point. And if we were all educated people I would agree with you. put the problem is that most of the people out there are not educated and their hatred for the place I live in has been so demonised it is sometime important to remember the good things.

It was not put up as a gloat, although I can see how it could be interpreted that way. In today's reality even pro-Israel people have to sometimes be reminded what they are fighting for, and the Anti have to remember that the place they are against has also done good things.

so you will excuse my one time moment of pride, I will try to keep it to a minimum

 
At 3:04 PM, Blogger Gert said...

Oleh:

I've no problem whatsoever with someone wanting to sing the praises of his own country, whether that is Israel or another country, although as Wolfie pointed out, a little humility goes a long way. And the opening line of the email you quote smacks of "Jewish supremacism", which is just as batty as anti-Semitism.

Also, you feel the IMO unnecessary need to underscore your point by referring to the fact that anti-Semites think Israel is a "shitty little country". You then make this the headline and closing argument of your post by referring to an incident that has never been corroborated and appears to be fabricated. This rumour went round the world like wildfire but that doesn't prove anything at all.

We should all be a little more careful with our sources: the Internet is a useful source of information but it is also a rumour mill, which some use to dissipate stuff for political means or out of sheer maliciousness.

Personally, I've had to retract a quote attributed to Ariel Sharon recently: it turned out that the quote in question was highly disputed. It can happen to anyone. I will certainly be more careful in the future and would urge you to do the same.

 
At 5:38 PM, Blogger Oleh Yahshan said...

actually gert, my refference in my comment here was not to anyone specific. it was a to the general public of who hate Israel becuase it's Israel. As apposed to some one like you for example (as far as I can tell) that has issues with some of Israel's policies, but can see past that and is able to see that Israel is not the source of all evil.

 
At 3:48 PM, Blogger Oleh Yahshan said...

one last note - taken from your friend - Sophia's Blog - I am commenting here because it's in context to this conversation, but also since I have been banned from your friend's site:

Dr Victorino de la Vega said...

Rarely in the history of mankind has a small underdeveloped nation exerted such a decisive influence on a great empire: in that, Israel is truly an unholy “beacon unto THE nation” and its poisonous flames are ravaging both the White House and Congress…


I guess there are some people who need to read my post.

 
At 5:09 PM, Blogger Gert said...

Oleh:

If you're trying to prove there are some out there that really hate Israel, you didn't need to bother: we all know that. Besides, there is no country that doesn't at times attract criticism, envy or even hatred.

Perhaps you should make a comment over at Dr Victorino's soapbox?

Also, Sophia is not my "friend" (in the real sense): she is merely a fellow-blogger whose blog I read and comment on, agree with often and disagree with regularly. As a person I know very little about her. I believe she considers me likewise.

 

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