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OpEdNews Op Eds    H4'ed 6/5/10

Israel "Accidentally" Distributes Video Mocking Flotilla Dead

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Think of it - Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu's office "accidentally" promoting a video, made by a former adviser of his, that mocks the Gaza aid flotilla dead. Inconceivable ? Think again !

Casting some doubt on the claim the video promotion was an "accident," according to the BNO News service, the Israeli Government Press Office (which is part of Netanyahu's Prime Minister Office) waited three hours before contacting the journalists who had received an email from the office promoting the video, to issue a retraction.

As Al Jazeera reported yesterday,

the most recent video distributed on Friday by the Israeli government press office (which belongs to the Israeli prime minister's office and is responsible for accrediting foreign journalists) is distasteful and insulting to those killed and injured on the Freedom Flotilla, and quite frankly disturbing - especially since it was made by the Jerusalem Post's deputy managing editor, Caroline Glick, who also moonlights for the American Center for Security Policy in Washington, DC.

Benjamin Netanyahu has a bad habit of thumbing his nose at his political opponents. On Friday, amidst the outcry against the killing of at least nine civilians on the Turkish Gaza aid ship Mavi Marmara, Israel's government press office "accidentally" promoted a satirical video, "We Con the World," made by a former adviser to Netanyahu, that appeared to mock the dead Mavi Marmara activists [here's one excellent and nuanced take on this from Lobelog / Foreign Policy]

The timing could not have been uglier.

Also on Friday, results from an official Turkish government conducted autopsy on the Mavi Marmara dead were released that showed that "a 60-year-old man, Ibrahim Bilgen, was shot four times in the temple, chest, hip and back. A 19-year-old, named as Fulkan Dogan, who also has US citizenship, was shot five times from less that 45cm, in the face, in the back of the head, twice in the leg and once in the back. Two other men were shot four times, and five of the victims were shot either in the back of the head or in the back."

On Friday afternoon, as news of the "We Con the World" video spread, the Israeli government then issued the following statement:

Due to a misunderstanding on our part, earlier today we inadvertently issued a video link that had been sent for our perusal. It was not intended for general release. The contents of the video in no way represent the official policy of either the Government Press Office or of the State of Israel.

We apologize for any inconvenience.

Thank you for your patients and understanding.
Efraim Roseman

But there's reason to doubt the sincerity of the official statement. For one thing, Caroline Glick, the Deputy Managing Editor at the Jerusalem Post, served as assistant foreign policy adviser to Prime Benjamin Netanyahu in 1997 and 1998. For a former adviser to Netanyahu to create such a timely video which then gets "accidentally" released by a Netanyahu-led Israeli government seems more than a bit suspicious.

Additionally the video was rapidly picked up and promoted by a multitude of American right wing and right wing evangelical media outlets including Pat Robertson's Christian Broadcasting Network. The evangelical Christian zionist connection is especially telling - Benjamin Netanyahu has an extremely close relationship with American evangelicals, especially through Christians United For Israel founder John Hagee, which helps explain the following recent news, via Charisma Magazine:

On a call with more than 3,000 participants affiliated with Christians United for Israel (CUFI), Deputy Foreign Minister Daniel Ayalon (pictured) said the flotilla's sponsor, a Turkey-based charity known as IHH, has ties to al-Qaida and is an ally of Hamas, a militant Palestinian organization that controls the Gaza Strip. Rather than delivering humanitarian supplies, Ayalon said the activists wanted to end the blockade, which Israel insists is needed to prevent groups from smuggling weapons to Hamas.

Netanyahu and Hagee vs. Peace

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