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Faux Humanitarian Irwin Cotler, the White Helmets, and the Whitewashing of an Appalling Agenda

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Canadian author and journalist Yves Engler has waged a long-time campaign against Cotler's crypto-neocolonialism. When former Canadian Prime Minister Paul Martin nominated Cotler for the Nobel Peace Prize in 2019, alongside Cotler's own nomination of the White Helmets, Engler wrote an article titled "Canada's Dershowitz, apologist for Israeli war crimes, nominated for "Peace Prize".


(Image by By Vanessa Beeley)   Details   DMCA

Irwin Cotler speaks at the 2014 Stand Strong for Israel Rally in Washington. Photo | Flickr

In the article Engler lays out a convincing argument that Cotler is a serial apologist for Israel's genocidal policies towards the Palestinian people. Engler reveals that Cotler was a long-time unofficial advisor to the former Israeli military chief of staff, General Moshe Ya'alon. Ya'alon is on the record saying that Israel "has a right to every part of the land of Israel." In 2002, Ya'alon told a conference of rabbis in Jerusalem: "The Palestinian threat harbors cancer-like attributes that have to be severed and fought to the bitter end."

Cotler's own daughter, attorney Michal Cotler-Wunsh, was included in a joint list of Israel's Resilience and Telem Party candidates headed by former Chiefs of Staff Benny Gantz and Moshe Ya'alon. Cotler-Wunsh was "born in Jerusalem, served in the Israeli military and obtained law degrees from the Hebrew University of Jerusalem." The Cotler family connections to extreme right-wing elements of the Israeli ruling elite could not be stronger or better defined.


(Image by By Vanessa Beeley)   Details   DMCA

The Bakr boys, four brothers hit by an Israeli airstrike while playing soccer in Gaza in 2014. Khalil Hamra | AP

To launch the Telem Party campaign, Gantz released a video celebrating his role in the massacre of 2,200 Palestinians during the 2014 "mowing the lawn" bombing campaign in Gaza. For Gantz, "parts of Gaza [being] sent back to the Stone Age" was a victory for "peace" in the region. A "peace" that only Israel would benefit from. In his article, Engler points out that Gantz faces a war-crimes case in the Netherlands for his participation in the 2014 campaign that claimed the lives of civilians in Gaza and reduced much of the besieged enclave to rubble, destroying infrastructure and ensuring living conditions were reduced to sub-third-world status.

In his staunch defense of Israel, Cotler has described illegal Israeli settlements in the West Bank as "disputed territories" and justified the 2006 Israeli war on Lebanon that left 1,200 mostly civilians dead. He has consistently attempted to derail investigations into Israeli war crimes - savagely attacking Richard Goldstone, who led the UN investigation of Israel's Operation Cast Lead, which killed 1,400 Palestinians in Gazain 2008 and 2009.

Cotler and Venezuela

It should come as no surprise that Cotler's support for U.S.-backed foreign interventions extends to the other side of the Atlantic as well. In Venezuela, he has been instrumental in furthering the U.S. agenda and undermining governance in an independent and sovereign state.

Cotler has gone so far as to state that "recognizing Juan Guaido as Venezuela's leader is not a coup, it's an embrace of democracy." Cotler has called for the delegitimization of the Maduro government, and the sanctioning of top officials to hasten the demise of Maduro and to "speed the transition to democratic governance" in Venezuela. He described the Venezuelan government as being responsible for the "worst ever humanitarian crisis in the region," while ignoring the U.S. role in creating and maintaining that "humanitarian crisis" through crippling sanctions aimed at undermining the Maduro government. This is such a textbook regime-change script and Cotler adheres to it without deviation.

In his expose' on Cotler, Engler claims that Cotler has been working with Guaido's right-wing Popular Will Party for four years with the aim of ousting the Maduro government. Regional media outlet VenezuelaAnalysis pointed out that Cotler was "one of three international experts" responsible for a 400-page Canadian-backed Organization of American States (OAS) report on rights violations in Venezuela. The panel recommended OAS Secretary General Luis Almagro "submit the report to the Office of the Prosecutor of the ICC [International Criminal Court] and that other states refer Venezuela to the ICC."

Cotler's dedication to the "mobilization of shame against human-rights violators" is invariably directed against states and leaders who oppose U.S. global supremacy.

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Vanessa Beeley is an independent journalist and photographer who has worked extensively in the Middle East – on the ground in Syria, Egypt, Iraq and Palestine, while also covering the conflict in Yemen since 2015. In 2017 Vanessa was a finalist for the prestigious Martha (more...)
 

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Faux Humanitarian Irwin Cotler, the White Helmets, and the Whitewashing of an Appalling Agenda