The Guardian: PCC investigates Mel P for racist hate speech

 

The Guardian has just published a story online about the Melanie Phillips article I have blogged about twice already this week.

It is vitally important that we set a clear marker here and insist that anti-Arab racism is every bit as repugnant as anti-Jewish racism. If anyone had used the inflammatory language Mel P used about Arabs on a national newspaper or magazine website and directed it towards Jews instead then there really is no question in my mind that they would face swift prosecution for racist hate speech and denunciation from all his/her peers. Let’s wait and see what the police now do…

As for the Spectator, they should be thoroughly ashamed of themselves for allowing such racist views to be published on their website.

Update: The Independent today carries a short news item about Mel P’s racist outburst about Arabs.

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19 Responses to The Guardian: PCC investigates Mel P for racist hate speech

  1. charlie says:

    THEY ARE PRIMITIVE SAVAGES.MUSLIMS WORSHIP A PRIMITIVE SAVAGES RELIGION

  2. A couple hours ago Mel P posted a new article on the Spectator website mentioning this blog:

    http://www.spectator.co.uk/melaniephillips/6800885/melanie-in-wonderland.thtml

    So, apologies to all in advance if we now attract bigoted comments like the above from Mel P’s fans.

  3. Mandy says:

    I’ve noticed that many vehement Israel supporters are now distorting the facts pertaining to Melanie’s article. If you search online, you’ll see that many lobbyists are suggesting Melanie is being subject to investigation merely for referring to the Itamar murderers as “savages”. To anyone who hasn’t read Melanie’s article in full, I suggest taking a peek:
    http://www.spectator.co.uk/melaniephillips/6779100/armchair-barbarism.thtml

    Melanie is not merely referring to the murderers as savages – she’s referring to all Arabs. She talks about the “moral depravity” of all Arabs, the savagery of all Arabs. She describes Arabs as a “bunch of neo-Nazi fanatics and baby murderers”. I agree with Inayat 100% – can you imagine the uproar and the attempts to silence if a high-profile journalist was making the same remarks about all Jews. It would not be tolerated. Yet if the Muslim community asks for a remotely comparable level of balanced reporting, it is depicted as political correctness gone mad. Any honest and discerning person can immediately see the rank double standard. Melanie Phillips is not only a racist playing on the public’s ignorance – she’s also a first-class hypocrite. The tragedy is that I don’t think she realises it (unlike a lot of her supporters who use her delusional rose-tinted view of Israel to help garner support for Israel’s ongoing atrocities).

    Shame on you Melanie Phillips for your rank hypocrisy. When the history books eventually describe the crimes committed by Israel against the Palestinian people, people like yourself will not be remembered with any kind of respect. You will be seen for what you are – a racial supremacist who posed as a “plain speaker” but who in fact was propagandizing on behalf of a war criminal regime.

  4. Michael Medved says:

    Mandy:
    What exactly is factually incorrect about these descriptions? Have you seen any news lately? Do the words 9/11, 7/7, Bali, Djerba, Madrid ring a bell? Or, perhaps, Libya? Have you checked for how long “Mein Kampf” stays in the bestseller list at the Arab book markets? Have you seen the slogans “Hitler was right” heaved high at all these oh so peaceful Arab demonstrations against Israel and the West?

  5. Michael: Would you regard it as being antisemitic if someone was to describe Jews as being ‘morally depraved’ and ‘savages’ because of the actions of Israel during the bombardment and invasion of Gaza in December 2008/January 2009?

    • Veronica Price says:

      Except the actions of Israel are made in self defence. Israeli’s don’t go round cutting off infants heads and stabbing 3 year olds in the heart, twice. Muslims, being the savages they are, are silent when Muslim leaders are calling Jews pigs and monkeys. You’re all truly disgusting. History will judge you, not the Jews, and God too, you devil infested hell bound hounds.

      • Mandy says:

        No Veronica, Israel is not acting in self-defence (although the Israeli authorities seem to have brainwashed the civilian population into thinking this, so I can’t blame you for your comments). I recently visited the West Bank and saw firsthand the efforts of successive Israeli governments to establish “peace” with their neighbours. There are now around 500,000 illegal Jewish settlers in the West Bank (which is Palestinian land according to everyone in the world except Melanie Phillips and religious fundamentalist nutcases). Worse still, some of these settlers are violent racists and extremists who taunt, intimidate and assault Palestinians on a daily basis – in most cases without the slightest hint of provocation. This situation has been extensively documented and captured on camera time and time again by Israeli human rights activists and international journalists, yet the Israeli government does nothing to stop it. In fact, the Israeli government provides soliders to protect the settlers whilst not providing any protection for the Palestinians who are being subject to the harrassment.

        The town of Hebron is perhaps the most shocking example of this situation. There are around 700 illegal settlers in the old city and around 2,000 Israeli soliders stationed there to protect them. I have personally witnessed this atrocious state of affairs with my own eyes. When a settler taunts or assaults a Palestinian, the majority of soliders refuse to intervene. However if a Palestinian dares to retaliate, the soldiers then pounce and treat the Palestinian as the culprit. What goes on in Hebron is an affront to human decency and humanity – all of it sanctioned (and indeed sponsored) by the Israeli government.

        If you want just a small taste of what some Israeli settlers get up to, check out these pieces of footage (just a tiny sample of what’s now available, thanks to journalists and human rights groups):

        1. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=irIXIy6hNc8
        (note how the settler shown in this footage threatens to kill not only the Palestinians whose land he is trespassing on but also the British film crew)

        2. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kem1ajIKv1k&feature=related
        This footage has particular significance because an Israeli former justice minister, Yosef Lapid, actually saw it and had the decency to make his feelings known. He described the settler doing the taunting as reminiscient of his own experiences of anti-semitic taunts when he was a young boy.

        3. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QSDC_xUtf8o
        Another of the many incidents caught on camera

        I am not a Palestinian, an “Arab”, or an ultra leftist – I am a regular dual British-Australian citizen with an open mind and I can tell you that what I saw in the West Bank shook me to my core. I cannot begin to imagine what I would have witnessed if I’d been allowed access into Gaza.

        So, please don’t tell me that Israel is the victim and that it’s trying to make peace. Israeli authorities are continuing with the relentless theft of Palestinian land and the relentless protection of religious fanatic settler thugs, all the while making the utterly disingenuous claim that they want peace. If you want peace with Palestinians, stop bulldozing their homes and stealing their land. Stop providing the military protection which allows your Israeli extremist thugs to harrass them and make their lives a misery. Start treating them with the basic human decency you’d expect for yourselves, and then you may achieve peace. Until then, don’t play the victim because most of the world doesn’t buy it anymore.

    • Michael Medved says:

      Of course. Because there was nothing savage, barbarian and moraly depraved about the Israeli actions in Gaza in the aforementioned period.

      • So, if someone writes about ‘the moral depravity of the Jews’ and calls them ‘savages’ – that is antisemitic. But, if Mel P writes about ‘the moral depravity of the Arabs’ and calls them ‘savages’: that is perfectly fine and dandy, eh?

      • Michael Medved says:

        As I said before – 9/11, 7/7, Djerba and Madrid were the Arab doing. Add to this the so-called “Arab spring”, during which in a matter of months many more Arabs were killed by their fellow Arabs than by Israel in the span of the last decades. Add to this honour killings and forced marriages, happening not only in the Islamic world, but in the heart of Europe as well. These things seem to be a global phenomenon in the Arab world, so the generalization Mrs. Phillips engaged in seems to have a very solid and broad factual base to be built upon. On the contrary, there is no factual base to make such generalizations about Jews – unless, of course, you believe the vicious modern 1001 nights fairy-tales like “Muhammad al-Durah murder”, “Jenin massacre”, “Blood of babies for a Passover seder” etc.
        Having said that, I feel a bit uncomfortable with the exact wording of Mrs. Phillips’ sentence. During my life in Israel I encountered quite a number of very decent and kind-hearted Arabs. All of them, without exception, were Christians. Thus it’s easy to figure out what is really to blame for the savage streak.

  6. Huldah says:

    Mandy says

    “I am not a Palestinian, an “Arab”, or an ultra leftist – I am a regular dual British-Australian citizen with an open mind ”

    Your comments indicate otherwise. For decades, well before any ‘occupation’ of Judea and Samaria, Jews in the Holy Land were threatened and attacked by their Arab neighbours with the assistance, shamefully, of the British when they held the League of Nations Mandate.

    Hebron, which you mention, had a millenia-old Jewish community in precisely the area that the Jewish settlers live in today until the massacre of dozens of Jews by their Arab neighbours under the noses of the British in 1929 – after which the British ethnically cleansed the survivors. Were you aware of this?

    Since the State of Israel was declared in 1948 – on the ancient homeland of the Jewish people – Israel’s Arab neighbours have threatened and intimidated her Jewish population with shooting, bombings and wars aimed at Israel’s annihilation.

    You scorn Israel’s attempts to make peace with her neighbours. Yet you ignore the fact that, far from preparing for a peaceful 2-state solution, Palestinian leaders brainwash Palestinian children into hating their Jewish neighbours through TV programmes and school books and talk peace in English to western leaders whilst promising their own people in Arabic to take over the whole land, including Israel.

    Finally, you dismiss Israel’s security concerns despite the constant shelling of Israel from Gaza and the regular interception at checkpoints of people intent on bombing, shooting and stabbing Israeli citizens. The security fence has has the effect of ending the murders of Israelis in pizza parlours, nightclubs, buses and markets. Were these murders fictional?

    Your comments don’t seem open minded or informed to me, Mandy.

    • Mandy says:

      I am aware of all the history you mention Huldah, but you omit crucial facts from the equation. Yes Jews have been subject to Palestinian threats and attack since 1948 – entirely understandable given that the Jews had stolen much of their land and property and killed them off in considerable numbers. The Palestinians resisted, just as you would in the same situation.

      By any fair definition, the Palestinians are the indigenous people of the land. I, along with secularists the world over, am not interested in who was or wasn’t present in the region some 2,000 or 3,000 years ago – it is completely irrelevant. Imagine if the rest of us tried laying stake to an entire region and forcibly displacing another people based on an ancestral connection dating back 2,000 years ago – the notion is nonsensical to anyone except religious fundamentalists (if you disagree, then why not go over to the USA or Australia and help the natives reclaim their land – they do, after all, have exceedingly more recent claims to the land than the Jews do to Palestine).

      I am fully aware of the 1929 massacre of Jews in Hebron. I am also fully aware of the 1994 massacre of Arabs committed by Baruch Goldstein in Hebron. I also know about the small minority of Jewish fundamentalists who celebrated Baruch Goldstein’s actions and still, to this day, consider him to be a hero and holy martyr. The point I make is that it cuts both ways. When Melanie Phillips talks about alleged scenes of jubilation in Gaza following news of the Itamar murders, she omits any reference to the bloodthirsty settlers who still revere Baruch Goldstein and his actions. How cynically convenient.

      I am aware that Palestinian schools and media depict the Israelis in a very bad light, but Israeli schools and media would do the same if they were at the mercy of a ruthless occupying force. It’s as simple as that. You can’t oppress people to such an extent and expect them to think well of you. And might I suggest you peruse a few of Israel’s major newspaper sites (available online) and look at the comments that regularly pour in about Palestinians – if that isn’t unmitigated racial hatred, then nothing is.

      You make reference to the separation wall and to the fact that there had been a number of suicide bombings in Israel prior to its erection. I don’t for one minute suggest that these murders were fictional. I know they were real and I am aware that a significant number of Israeli citizens died or were maimed as a result. But once again you omit the context. Israel is one of the most sophisticated military machines in the world; the Palestinians, on the other hand, have no sovereignty and can only fight back against oppression using amateur and crude tactics (or terrorism, as you’d call it). I can fully understand why Israelis would support the erection of the wall as a means of protecting civilians, but this does nothing to address the causes of Palestinian attacks. Nor does it explain why the Israeli authorities used the erection of the wall as a means to steal even more Palestinian land.

      I come from Australia – a country that was settled using force and terror – so I do not talk from a position of purity myself. What most (though admittedly not all) Australians now acknowledge, though, is the wrongdoing in the way our nation was established. We know we killed and maimed and forcibly stole the land from the native people, and we know we have a huge moral debt to Australian aborigines as a result. Unfortunately the situation for Aboriginal people is not reversible, and so we are still struggling very hard to find ways to improve surviving Aboriginal people’s living conditions and make some amends for what we as a people have inflicted (and admittedly we’re not doing too well at it). When I hear the way many Israelis talk about Palestinians today – as though they are sub-human, or a complete non-entity – it reminds me of what I learnt in high school about the British settlers’ initial attitude to Australia aborigines. Apparently the settlers used the term “terra nullius” which means a land belonging to no-one. This is how many Israelis talk about Palestinians today – as though they are not indigenous, and as though they have no right to feel massively aggrieved. This is a disgraceful throwback to a cruel, bygone era.

      I do understand that there was a need for a Jewish homeland following the terrible events in Nazi Germany and that this was a driving factor in the eventual establishment of Israel. The problem is that Israel, like other nations before it, was founded at the terrible expense of the indigenous people. If the Israeli authorities continue to deny this, and continue sneaking their way out of any fair and just settlement (I refer you not only to my own personal observations in the West Bank but also to wikileaks), then they are the architects of their own woes.

      • Michael Medved says:

        Mandy:
        It’s a very convenient position indeed. First you perform a genocide of the indigenous population in Australia, to make – I quote – “the situation for the aboriginal people not reversible”, and then you shed a bit of token crocodile tears, make a couple of token gestures and feel absolved and morally pure. Not that you are alone – the Americans were and are no better in their treatment of the native Indians, not to mention Germany and their recent treatment of Jews. Yet Australia, the USA and Germany seem to be considered now the beacons of human rights.Israel does nothing of a sort, but tries to survive in a hostile environment, once in a while resorting to measures one should avoid in a perfect world. During the so- called “genocide” of the so-called “Palestinian people”, however, the number of these Palestinians increased manyfold. Yet Israel is being vilified like no other nation in the world.
        Perhaps Israel should revert to the Australian / North American / German model in order to be respected and solve its particular problems. What do you think?

      • Mandy says:

        Michael, the decimation of the Australian Aboriginal population started in 1788 – long before my time and not at my personal behest (as your comments seem to imply). Having said that, no I don’t feel that we as a nation are morally absolved on the basis of a few token gestures – far from it (and especially given that we can’t seem to get it right when it comes to improving Aboriginal health and welfare). But there is no going back. It may sound glib, but it’s true. There’s nothing Australians can do to turn back the clock and reverse what happened. The only thing we can do is recognise the terrible injustice for what it was and strive to prevent such a scenario from re-occurring.

        Fast forward to 2011, and the international community is now watching “democratic” Israel play the part of the colonial aggressor – stealing more and more Palestinian land under our noses and subjecting the natives to brutal oppression. The problems for Israel are varied. Firstly, such acts of colonial theft and aggression are now expressly forbidden under international law. Secondly, the world is now watching on as this land grab and oppression occurs – not so when the British were invading Australia and there wasn’t anyone keeping a watchful international eye. Thirdly, and quite crucially, Israel obsessively promotes itself as the innocent peace-seeking victim of bloodthirsty “terrorists”. Now that many of us in the international community know the facts on the ground (some of which I described in my prior posts), we realise that Israel is a terror-driven state– far from the victim we’d previously believed it to be.

        So yes, Israel is being vilified internationally – and justly so. Looking at Israel’s current government (and especially at the Hitleresque minister for foreign affairs, Avigdor Lieberman), I see little hope for change unless the international community intervenes and forces change.

        If you haven’t already done so, I suggest you check out what was revealed care of the Palestine Papers leak. This leak just reinforces what the facts on the ground already tell us – that the Israeli authorities are the ones blocking peace efforts and not the other way around. If the Israeli authorities have managed to convince Israeli civilians otherwise, then all the more shame on them and Israeli civilians should be demanding answers.

        Anyway, I’ll sign off now as it’s very late. Best wishes.

      • Michael Medved says:

        Mandy, “you” referred to the Australians as a whole and not to you personally. If my choice of words implied otherwise, I apologize.
        The Palestinians were offered a state in Camp David at the year 2000 – but opted to start a 2nd intifada instead, resulting in thousands of Israeli and many thousand of Palestinian deaths and propping Israel to build a protective wall, which to your chagrin prevents them from taking more Israeli lives. Should they wonder that what they are offered now is significantly smaller than 11 years ago? Germany was held responsible for the outbreak of World War I, although the picture was by far not as clear as with the intifada of 2000. Take a look at the answer to the German peace overtures of 1916, as well as at the territorial losses Germany had to endure in the Versailles Treaty.
        The Oslo Accords stipulate that any far-reaching changes to the disputed territories should be discussed and agreed upon between the parties. Alas, the Palestinians choose not to negotiate. Instead they try to abrogate the Oslo Accords, endorsed by the international community, with the backing of this same international community and its nearly saint leader, the Community Organizer. I would say that should it go any further, Israel would be perfectly right to abrogate the Oslo Accords reciprocally and to end this farce called “the Palestinian Authority” for good.
        Last but not the least, the world is deploring the Holocaust-denying statements of Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, as well as his threats to “wipe Israel off the map”. The Iranian president is, if I might say that, an “amateur” Holocaust denier, whose country – its nuclear program and its terror activities notwithstanding – has no common border and no territorial dispute with Israel. At Israel’s borders, however (or within Israel proper, depending on the point of view), there rules – with the full backing of the international community – a professional Holocaust denier, who owes this theme his doctorate from a Moscow University and who calls for Israel’s destruction in Arabic while distributing meaningless platitudes in English. His name is Mahmoud Abbas. Amazingly, this guy is the best the so-called “peace loving” Palestinians have to offer, as the so-called “Palestine Papers” reveal. They also reveal that the oh so generous offers of Mahmoud Abbas, who in reality enjoys no real legitimacy and no real power base within the disputed territories, fall well short of the absolute maximum of consessions Israel could offer without a real threat to its survival.
        So I return to our starting discussion point. Whenever “the beacons of light” saw fit to reverse to genocidal measures in order to protect themselves from real or imaginary threats, they did so, only for the coming generations to shed a couple of token tears openly and to enjoy the irreversible situation of the exterminated privately. These same generations dare to criticize Israel for its survival-conditioned measures, standing in no comparison whatsoever to the examples I brought previously.

  7. Mandy: A series of very useful and informative posts that I am sure will be appreciated by many readers. Thank you.

  8. Charlie says:

    Mandy, thank you for those videos. Those Settlers were fine examples of the type – violent, incoherent racists. Once the Israeli state understands that there will never be peace as long as they steal land and abuse, intimidate and slaughter Palestinians, then they may be able to move forward.

  9. Mandy: Btw, many thanks for the video links above. Very shocking and all the more outrageous that Mad Mel P seems to think those Jewish settlers have the legal right to build their homes on occupied Palestinian territory.

    • Mandy says:

      You’re welcome Inayat – the human rights group B’Tselem have now captured a lot of this criminal behaviour on tape and some of it has been posted to youtube. Makes our home-grown ASBO thugs look like a pack of choirboys, doesn’t it.

      It’s nice reading through your blog Inayat.

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