September 11 cover-up?
For those who know a little about modern history will be aware that America knew in advance of the imminent attack of Pearl Harbour, how the Japanese codes had been broken, how the American’s best ships had been moved out, that Roosevelt had written his declaration of war a couple of days before the attack, and so on… The whole thing had been engineered with the objective of starting a war with trade rival Japan, but more importantly with Germany, whom the U.S. had been baiting by harassing its shipping, but could not get Germany to retaliate.
Fifty years ago the Americans were bombing Germany without any scruples toward women and children. Today Jewish-controlled America is getting the feel of what people had to endure. Perhaps those ‘terrorists’ will use nuclear weapons, and then America can also remember Hiroshima and Nagasaki.
Like Pearl Harbour, the September 11 attack was propagandised as ‘a day which will live in infamy!’ But Americans have little knowledge about the outside world and when it comes to world history they are even more ignorant - I remember when tested, how junior college students thought that the Japanese were America’s allies in World War II!
But like World War II, there is much we have not been told, which allows the government to construct the official version. Consider the following:
• A hijacking in the US is a major event, yet on September 11 four hijacked planes flew around for nearly half an hour and not a peep, no intercepting planes, etc. When the air-controllers were about to tell their version to the media the FBI told them to keep quite.
• ‘Terrorism’ against the U.S. is one of the top security priorities of the CIA and national security agencies, which for decades have been monitoring and filtering all radio, telephone messages, e-mails, and Internet usage; in order to gather intelligence on terrorists. Yet we have a ‘terrorist’ network working over a long period in the U.S. and Europe planning a sophisticated operation, without the apparent knowledge of the U.S. security agencies despite their vast technological and financial resources. It’s suggested that they did know, but like Pearl Harbour, let the September 11 attack happen for maximum media and public impact, and the subsequent objective - war - would be easy. An old but cynical ploy.
With the propaganda in place and the emotion climate stage-managed, again the naïve Gentiles (goyim-cattle) were all fired up and sent marching off to yet another slaughter, to do Israel’s dirty work.
• It seems like there were several indications that some had advance warning of the attack. According to the headline in Jewish Week (21 September) “Mossad reportedly warned U.S. that major attacks were coming”. “The paper, according to The Jerusalem Post, said the Israeli officials specifically warned their American counterparts that ‘large-scale terrorist attacks on highly visible targets on the American mainland were imminent.’ They offered no specific information about targets.”
• In another newspaper a report stated: “Israeli Firm Quit Twin Tower Before Attack”. “The move by Zim Israel Navigation Company, an Israeli [government owned] firm, out of the World Trade Center two weeks before the terror attack saved the lives of more than 200 employees. Zim moved to Norfolk, Va.”
“ClearForest, another Israeli company with headquarters in the Twin Towers, reported none of its staff was injured in the terrorist attack.” It just so happened that no employee showed up for work that day!
• Newsbites, in New York, stated that two employees of their instant message firm, Odigo, received a two-hour advance warning that the World Trade Centre would be attacked. While they did not take it seriously, this is further evidence that, “the word was out!”
• According to radio reports, FEMA was alerted on Sunday, September 9, and classes were immediately suspended at one Washington, D.C., university next day.
• Israel’s Ha’aretz newspaper reported that the FBI had arrested five Israelis on the roof of a New York building overlooking the disaster area. They were engaging in “puzzling behavior”. It goes on to report that the Jews were spotted video-taping the burning towers while smiling and hugging one another. All acts interpreted as cries of joy and mockery! This case was also reported by the Associated Press.
• Perhaps Jewish Federal Reserve boss Alan Greenspan persuaded Pres. Bush that only a major war against Israel’s enemies would suffice to avert an impeding international financial depression. At least such an event would deflect public attention from the declining economy, as soon as the conservatives came to power, odd that.
The scenario is not unlike Vietnam, but since then the U.S. government has stage-managed overseas military operations with co-operation with the largely Jewish owned U.S. mass media.
Whilst the U.S. claims to be the champion of freedom and democracy, it is in fact a New World Order capitalist bully, testing its armaments and posturing in weaker countries like Cambodia (1975), Grenada (1983), Libya (1986), Panama (1989), Iraq (1991), Somalia (1994), Haiti (1994), Afghanistan (1998), Sudan (1998), Iraq (1998), Yugoslavia (1999), and Afghanistan (2001). Hardly a year has past since 1903, that America hasn’t been involved in some overseas military adventure.
American aggression is part of their character. By the 1990s American citizens had more than 200,000,000 guns, and on a typical day, 1,000,000 Americans carry a gun. Annually almost 40,000 Americans are killed by guns. Children also go to school armed and some are killed, whilst Hollywood Jews constantly promotes violence as part of its cultural cancer to undermine Gentile society.
The naïve mass-media consumers appear not to have asked the fundamental question. Why did it happen? The events of September 11 didn’t just come out of the blue nor happen in isolation. This was not a random attack but the result of American’s forty-year anti-Arab foreign policy and decades of unconditional U.S. support for Jewish interests in the Middle East.
Beginning with the massacre of thousands of Palestinians and the dispossession of millions more the occupation of Palestine and the creation of the Zionist state in 1948, U.S. support has persisted down to the present day, with Jewish occupiers continuing their daily slaughter of Palestinian men, women and children - all with U.S. backing and complicity. The cup of wrath has been filling up and September 11 is one result.
When the U.S. government declared ‘War on Poverty’, Americans got more poverty.
When they declared ‘War on Illiteracy’, they got more illiteracy.
When they declared ‘War on Crime’ they got more crime.
And when they declared ‘War on Drugs’ they got more drugs.
President Bush declared a ‘War on Terrorism’. Guess what the Americans will get.
There is only one way that a recurrence of September 11 can be prevented. That is to address the underlying issue which caused it in the first place. The U.S. can apply vast military resources to issues, but if it fails to redress those just and legitimate grievances, and the root cause behind the September 11 attack, then we can expect many more tragic encores.
Again we see the same old players becoming involved - America, Britain, and the Jews. It was the same in World War I, World War II, Iraq, and Afghanistan.
In World War I we were told it was a war to end all wars but we ended up with poverty and unemployment.
In World War II we were told it was to abolish fear and dictatorship instead we ended up with mass-murdering dictator ‘Uncle Joe’ Stalin, global Communism, and forty years of the Cold War.
Now we’re told we’re going to “rid the world of Evil”.
What is involved here is a clash between MacWorld and jihad, a holy war - which the U.S. for all its military might, cannot win in the long run. To be sure, it can bloody the Islamic militants, but for all the red-white-and-blue hoopla and flag waving, it simply lacks the spiritual will to sustain a protracted campaign against an opponent motivated by something more than the share market and weekend sports, one whose fighters joyously relish the prospect of a martyrs death in an unconventional war aimed at the vulnerable sated and decadent Western world.
Like the British before them, America’s real interest in the Middle East is its oil reserves to power its industry. One should never forget that America’s global military adventures have at there basis in business, nor the phase “The business of America is business”, and thus we have the globalisation or New World Order, America’s domination of global capitalism.
Book Launch - 20 April 2002 - 2.30 PM Power House - Brisbane - New Farm
Rudi Stiebritz: pawn of war.
Drafted into the German army in 1942, Rudi Stiebritz was sent into battle on the Eastern Front, participating in one of the longest and bloodiest campaigns in modern history. In 1945 Germany surrendered and Rudi and thousands of his comrades were sent to Siberia as a prisoner of war. Rudi tells his story as he experienced it - with humour, passion and honesty.
2002 Revisionist Conferences
Trieste, Italy. Dates: 25 - 26 May 2002.
Historical Revisionism - Second International Conference in Trieste.
At a moment when the rulers of the world, still trusting in the power of their historical and political lies about 20th century Europe, are making plans for yet more grand “democratising” carnage, the cultural association Nuovo Ordine Nazionale (Trieste) is preparing a second international conference in favour of free historical research, not yet hindered by Italian law. Those who wish to attend this gathering or to help with its organisation are requested to contact the N.O.N. head of communications at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Please note: Certain texts which were presented at the first conference, held on the 6th and 7th of October 2001, may be consulted at www.abbc.com/trieste.
Washington, D.C. Dates: 14 -16 June 2002
The Barnes Review presents the Third International Conference on Authentic History & the First Amendment. In America, for now, free speech survives. Come to Washington this June and enjoy stimulating and authentic history while you still have that precious right. Last year's conference was a smash...But the third conference will be bigger, better and even more informative...from the mysteries of early men to the terrorist phenomenon of the 21st century - to enlighten you with their latest research and findings on critical aspects of history, politics and international intrigue.
Register per telephone: USA 1-877-773-9077. Per mail to: The Barnes Review, PO Box 15877, Washington, D.C. 2003.
Orange County, California. Dates: 21 - 23 June 2002
The 14th Institute for Historical Review Conference is now set to be held from Friday afternoon, June 21, through Sunday afternoon, June 23, in Orange Country, southern California. It will be hard to top the last (13th) IHR Conference, held over Memorial Day weekend, May 2000. That three-day gathering generated more, and more objective, media coverage than any IHR meeting ever. And during this past year, the IHR has garnered unprecedented global media attention. So if the past is any guide, this will be another memorable, stimulating meeting, with talks by cutting-edge revisionist scholars and activists. More details I H R, P.O. Box 2739, Newport Beach, CA 92659 USA, Tel. 949 - 631 1490. Fax: 949 - 631 0981; http://www.ihr.org/
Cincinnati, Ohio. Dates: 30 August - 2 September 2002
On the Labor Day weekend, August 30 to September 2, 2002, David Irving's Real History USA will again hold its annual convention at Cincinnati. In recognition of the events of September 11 and of the immeasurable interest in them, we shall make the attacks on the World Trade Center and the Pentagon, and the subsequent war in the Middle East, a central theme of the conference. There will be a number of seminars on other topics as well, sometimes running parallel to these talks. In newspapers, magazines, and on the World Wide Web, experts have analyzed the events in detail, focusing on matters of obvious controversy: the content of the voice recordings, the intercepted phone messages, the backgrounds of the alleged hijackers, the roles of the F.B.I. and Government, the protection of free speech in the face of war preparations - these are just some of the matters that have exercised brilliant brains. We have already drawn up a list of experts (but we invite you to propose names of particular experts whom you would like to hear). We are pleased to confirm that we shall hold the basic registration fee for the four-day weekend to $410.
PO Box 62414, Cincinnati, Ohio, USA; Tel.: 1-15241-0414; Fax: UK - 44-20-7499-9409;
Email: Focalp@aol.com .
Nicholas Cowdery, QC, NSW Director of Public Prosecutions, 'Truth in Public Life', Insight, SBS TV, 14 March 2002: I think both politics and the law have become unnecessarily adversarial. We do have an adversarial legal system. Any thought that it is designed to find the truth of the matter, I'm afraid, is misplaced. It is a case which is based upon, or a system which is based, or a system which is based upon one case being pitched against another case. So you have two cases going head for head in an adversarial way. And the political system seems to have gone that way too. There was a comment earlier about the rigid two-party system where you have two adversaries carrying on almost a ritual competition between each other and, I think, there's, I certainly couldn't advocate that every member of parliament should be an independent, but there must be some way devising systems both in the courts and in parliament that will take some of the adversarial character out of the procedures, make them more inquisitorial, in the sense of inquiring into issues that need to be inquired into, and help them to find the truth.
H Metzger: An Eyewitness comments on the Auschwitz swimming pool controversy.
With great interest I read Newsletter No 135 wherein you expose the fraudulent attempt by the Auschwitz authorities to make us believe that the swimming pool was an emergency water reserve (EWR), which in German is called a 'Feuerlöschteich'. After the Soviet Russians occupied Lodz, the Polish communists held Germans in slave labour camps. While working for the Soviet military forces as a slave labourer in Lodz, I actually saw a Feuerlöschteich. We were detailed to clean up, dispose of bombs and ammunition, and to rebuild the aerodome. Near the barrack, the Germans had built an EWR, which the Soviet personnel used as a swimming pool. Owing to the steep slope, they used a step ladder fixed to the wall because stagnant water makes the concrete surface quite slippery, and without the aid of a ladder it is not possible to get out.
On the night of the terror bombing of Dresden, people jumped into the EWRs to get away from the heat, but then drowned because they could not get out.
The size of an EWR is approximately 20m square at the surface, then tapers off to a depth of approximately 10 metres with a 3m square base. The EWR holds about 1.8 to 2.0 million litres. I do hope this clarifies the matter somewhat.
Eric Margolis: 'Dr. Strangelove with a Texas drawl', Toronto Sun, 17 March 2002.
While the U.S. and its allies swatted shadows in Afghanistan, the Mideast was spinning out of control. Palestinian suicide bombers killed scores of Israeli civilians. Twenty thousand Israeli troops and 100 tanks rampaged through Palestinian territory, killing over 100 civilians and fighters in scenes that recalled the 1943 Warsaw ghetto uprising or Soviet tanks in Budapest in 1956. A recent poll showed a shocking 40% of Israelis favoured ethnic cleansing of Arabs from the West Bank and Gaza.
Joe Sobran: http://www.sobran.com/columns/index.shtml , March 12, 2002.
Unless I've missed something, even such alleged 'anti-Semites' as David Duke and Louis Farrakhan don't advocate treating Jews as Israel treats gentiles. Anyone with a spark of decency would be ashamed to treat Jews that way. Yet a gentile can be accused of anti-Semitism even for the purely verbal sin of criticizing Israel, whereas a Jew who supports Sharon's physical cruelty is accused of ... well, nothing. We have no handy word for even the most brutal Jewish treatment of gentiles. To challenge the Jews' right to oppress Palestinians is called "denying Israel's right to exist." Apparently its "right to exist" includes the right to oppress, and is indeed inseparable from it. Even the "peace plans" that call for separate Jewish and Palestinian states seem to take for granted the right of the Jewish state to treat Arabs within its borders as inferiors. Perish the thought that Jews and gentiles should be equal! That would be anti-Semitism. According to Israel's "amen corner" in this country, Israel can do no wrong, except to concede too much to the Palestinians. Israel is a heroic "democracy" even when it treats its minority like dirt, and a"reliable ally" of the United States even when it steals American military secrets and sells them to Communist countries.
Legal Battles - "a victory" for Jeremy Jones?
1. Canada forces Holocaust denier to close website. Bill Gladstone, JTA and AJN, January 2002.
Toronto: Canadian Jewish officials are praising a decision that will force Holocaust denier Ernst Zündel to close down a website. Officials of the Canadian Jewish Congress hailed the 110-page decision by the Canadian Human Rights Tribunal ...as a "historic victory". The Tribunal ruled that Zündel was breaking the law through his arm's-length operation of a California-based website. University of Toronto Law Professor Ed Morgan, who chairs the Congress Ontario region, said the Tribunal's clear acceptance of Holocaust denial as a form of hate propaganda could have significant implications internationally. "A judicial finding of this nature will have an educative effect worldwide, as Holocaust denial can no longer hide under the cloak of scholarly debate or legitimate discourse," he said...[Fredrick Töben comments: More like the closing of our minds. It is better to be a 'Holocaust' denier than a 'Holocaust' liar.
Ernst Zündel: (From an interview to the Canadian Globe and Mail newspaper, described the Tribunal's ruling as tiresome and irrelevant) "You're talking to the new Ernst Zündel. They used to accuse me of Holocaust denial. Well, now I'm in Canada-denial. I have put Canada behind me."
Jeremy Jones: A precedent has been set. Although Zündel has moved to the United States, it's a victory. He has been essentially exiled...Our argument is that if something is legal, it should be legal on the internet. If it's illegal, it should be illegal on the internet."
2. Australia - In The Federal Court of Australia
Adelaide: On 14 March 2002 Fredrick Töben briefly appeared in the Federal Court, Adelaide, before Her Honour, Justice Branson. It was a video directions hearing with the judge and Jeremy Jones's legal team physically present at the Federal Court in Sydney. Although the alleged deed was committed in Adelaide, Jones insists that the trial be held in Sydney, thereby imposing more costs on Töben.
After hearing that the Applicant never received a copy of Töben's Defence papers, the judge expressed her displeasure at finding the Defence papers had not been properly filed. She even asked Töben whether he was not tertiary educated. Töben's claim, that he cannot find a legal person to handle the matter "for fear of the Jews", was brushed aside. Then she found that the matter be held in abeyance and that either side is free to reactivate it by filing a notice of motion. Then without the customary asking either side "Is there anything else?" she rose and stormed out the court. This description comes from an observer who witnessed the hearing in Sydney.
Adelaide Institute's Internet website front page >www.adelaideinstitute.org< displays the 'Offer of Settlement', together with this comment:
It has been over a month now, and the only response from the Jeremy Jones´ (on behalf of Australian Jewry) camp has been for their case against Dr Töben to lapse into abeyance! Prove the order, the number, and the weapon, and we will apologise!
Launceston: Jeremy Jones's case against widow and grandmother, Mrs Olga Scully, begins in her hometown on 29 April and is set down for five days. It will be of interest because if she is found guilty of offending against the Racial Discrimination Act - almost a certainty - then all individuals who letterbox (distribute junk mail) will be subject to this precedent-setting case. We shall have to wait and see what this will do for 'freedom of religion'. Contact Olga at email@example.com
It must be noted that not until Mrs Scully's husband died in 1995 did Jeremy Jones move against her for something she had been doing for 30 years, i.e. distribute revisionist and religious material. Until then, even Jones dared not move against the wife of much-respected high school principal Mr Denis Scully.
Russian-born Mrs Scully set her life's work on correcting the historical lie that the 'Russian Revolution' was a Russian revolution. That the Bolshevik-Jewish revolution was Jewish-inspired, was physically proven when the Soviet Union began breaking apart. It was then that hundreds of thousands of Soviet officials fled to the US, Europe, Australia and Israel - on account of feared political persecution! That is reminiscent of the saying doing the rounds in Southern Africa during the 1980s: When the Jews leave, there is still time. When the Indians leave, it's too late.
Everybody hates: Eetta Prince-Gibson looks at a disturbing study showing the extent to which adolescents have internalized the divisions tearing Israeli society apart
The Jerusalem Post, September 17, 2000
Does somebody in Israel hate somebody all the time? According to a recent research project, the answer is a resounding, a distressing, yes.
Dr. Dahlia Moore, from the Hebrew University in Jerusalem and the College of Management, has recently published the results of a study among nearly 5,000 Jewish and 1,200 Israeli Arab high school students, age 15-18. Put simply, the study sought to find out "who likes whom and who hates whom" within Israeli society.
Summing up her results, Moore says, "These students, the future of our society, carry a tremendous amount of hatred towards each other."
The students who participated in the study come from 168 randomly selected schools throughout Israel except from the independent haredi educational system. Students were given a questionnaire asking how much they love or hate the major political groups at the time: Labor, Likud, haredim, Arabs, Peace Now, and settlers in Gaza and the West Bank, and were told to mark their answers along a nine-point continuum (known as a Likert scale.) They were told that marking a "1" meant that they felt strong intolerance or hatred toward the group and marking a "9" meant that they felt strong love or support for the group.
In addition, Moore collected information regarding the students' political orientations, ethnic backgrounds, and other socio-demographic information. All of the responses were anonymous.
Overall, 47% of the Jewish students hate haredim, 51% hate settlers and 50% hate Arabs. When Moore sub-divided the Jewish group according to ethnic (Ashkenazi or Mizrahi), religious (religious-traditional or secular), and political (Left or Right) backgrounds, the findings became more complicated and more troubling.
Not surprisingly, religious Jews support the Right and hate the Left, and secular Jews tend to support the Left and hate the Right. Of secular students from predominantly Ashkenazi backgrounds, nearly 75% hate the settlers, while over 60% of students from Mizrahi backgrounds hate the Arabs. Furthermore, Moore notes, students who support the Left express more hatred and intolerance than students who support the Right.
The study was conducted twice, in late 1996 and in mid-1997, and the results were the same. It has taken since then to properly analyze the data, says Moore, and admits they reflect to some degree the political headlines of that time.
"It is true, for example, that we didn't ask about hatred towards Shas, which is a newer phenomenon, although we did ask about haredim. It is also true that some of these responses may reflect particular sensitivities after the Rabin assassination." However, Moore insists, the data is still relevant.
"The kind of hatred that we found in our study simply doesn't dissipate over a few years. Social processes aren't like that, and social change takes years. Sure, if we were to do the study today, the percentages might be a bit different. But is it better if 'only' 40% of the students hate the settlers? Or if an additional 50% hate Shas? "The point is that this should be a warning to our society. These kids hate, and with such depths of hatred, our society is in deep trouble. When you hate someone because they are different from you, you might also start to think that this person is somehow less worthy, less entitled to the same rights and privileges, less human."
Moore will present her research, which was funded by the "Partners in Peace" Program of the Truman Institute of the Hebrew University and the Eshkol Institute, at the Eighth International Conference of the International Society for Justice Research. The conference, which this year will discuss "social exclusion and social justice," will take place next week at the College of Management in Rishon Lezion.
But the findings have already created a furor among educators and politicians alike. Most of the attention has focused on the hatred between the Jewish population sectors, and especially on what some say is the surprising degree of hatred found towards the settlers.
Says Dr. Yehoyada Amir, lecturer in modern Jewish thought at Hebrew University and head of the Israel Rabbinical Program at Hebrew Union College (Reform), "These findings worry me... they reveal a deep truth about our society. Different groups in our society have no common language, no common goals, no sense of shared future. We've lost all sense of solidarity."
With regard to the particular hatred shown toward settlers, Amir, who identifies himself as a leftist, says that the public views the settlers as an existential threat, as an obstacle to peace.
"The settlers have turned the public against them," he says. "They have tried to force their dream of a Greater Israel on the majority of the Israeli public, and the public is rejecting them. But it is sad that this debate is expressed in hatred."
Yoel Bin Nun, rabbi of the Kibbutz Hadati Yeshiva at Kibbutz Ein Tzurim and a founding member of Gush Emunim, says he is outraged and saddened. "Hatred - towards anyone - is an illness," he cautions. "These tremendous amounts of hatred show that Israeli society is very ill."
Nearly 20 years ago, Bin Nun published an article in the settlers' magazine, Nekudah, entitled, "We Have Not Settled into the People's Hearts." Even then, Bin Nun says, he realized that the settler movement was alienating the majority of the Israeli public. "This study shows the results."
But the bulk of the responsibility for the hatred, he insists, lies squarely on the left-wing political leaders, educators, and media. "The young people wouldn't be expressing such hatred," he says, "if their surroundings weren't putting out a message of hatred. It is time for some deep soul-searching. The Left has transferred their hatred for the Arabs, with whom they believe they have made peace, to the settlers, whom they view as an obstacle to peace."
Orly, a 17-year-old Jerusalem high school student, strongly disagrees. She has participated in numerous dialogue groups with Palestinian youth, all sponsored by left-wing political groups. Orly acknowledges that she doesn't know anyone who lives on a settlement, but says that the dialogue with the Palestinians changed her way of relating to settlers, too.
"When I first met with the Palestinians, I had to think a lot about the stereotypes and the prejudices that I felt. And that has made me into a more open person. So I think that I am more open towards all sorts of opinions and people who are different from me, including settlers, even though I think that they are really wrong in their beliefs," she says.
Shani Tal, 16, who lives in a settlement north of Jerusalem. She says that when she comes into Jerusalem, she often feels estranged.
"Just like any group of teenagers," she says, "girls on the settlements have a style, a particular way of dressing. So people who see me on the street think that they know a lot about me because of the way I dress. Sometimes, I feel that people look at me with hatred, because they know I am a settler." But then she adds, "I know I do the same thing. When I see a guy without a kippa and with an earring in his ear - I think that I don't like him, and I have a bad feeling about him."
Coincidentally, Moore released the results of her study on the same day that the government announced that it would establish the Advisory Council for Religious-Secular Relations (Yahad) and that the Group for National Consensus convened in Jerusalem.
Yahad is intended to serve as a statutory council which will discuss issues such as secular-religious tensions and advise the government, the Knesset, and other official institutions.
The idea for Yahad first came up four years ago during the Netanyahu administration, but the council itself never materialized. When joining Prime Minister Ehud Barak's coalition, Meimad demanded that Yahad be established without delay, but it has taken the government over a year just to formally decide to establish it. The council's budget, according to Moni Mordechai, media adviser to Minister Michael Melchior, responsible for diaspora affairs in Barak's cabinet, is less than "several hundred thousand shekels," although he is hopeful that "we will receive more money in 2001." Mordechai declined to be specific.
Political struggles have frustrated Melchior's goodwill from the beginning. Even appointing the members of the council have been an almost impossible task, since, for example, the haredim will not participate in any council in which representatives of the Reform or Conservative movements are members. And last week, Yahad, which is still only an intent, became the most recent pawn in the escalating tension between the President's and the Prime Minister's Offices, with each claiming credit for the initiative. Sighs Mordechai, "Establishing Yachad has been an uphill climb. There are political mines all over the place. But now I am optimistic." Ruthie Duek, a clinical psychologist from Haifa, heard about the study while driving to Jerusalem to participate in the Group for National Consensus.
The Group for National Consensus, established in 1998 by then-minister of Education and Culture Yitzhak Levy (NRP), is composed of prominent educators, intellectuals, and professionals, religious and secular, including Anat Gov, Dr. Tova Ilan, Maj.-Gen. (res.) Yoram Yair, Rabbi Israel Rozen, and former MK (Meretz) Dedi Zucker. According to its brochure, the group seeks to achieve national consensus on issues that potentially divide religious and secular Jews, such as Shabbat, personal status, and the role of Jewish law.
This week, during two days of intensive deliberations, the group discussed position papers regarding public Shabbat observance. Although they did not reach any decisions, Duek says that as a secular leftist, she was surprised and excited at the extent of agreement that the group was able to reach.
And the practical implications? They remain unclear. Leaders of the Group for National Consensus hope that by publicizing their position papers, they will be able to affect both the tone and the substance of public life.
Duek is also an active volunteer in B'Sod Siach. Unlike many of the other so-called "dialogue groups," B'Sod Siach, which was established in 1993, comprised of educational and mental health professionals, who voluntarily contribute their professional skills by leading on-going discussions between groups in conflict, such as religious and secular, Right and Left, different ethnic groups, and veterans and new immigrants. She and her colleagues are intensely committed to the dialogue process and are thoroughly convinced that these groups can make a critical contribution to easing the tensions and hate so prevalent in Israeli society. Duek is a Peace Now activist who deeply believes that Israel must withdraw from the territories in order to attain peace. Yet she sits and works comfortably with Miriam Freuchtman, a 45-year-old religious psychologist from the settlement of Karnei Shomron, who is also a member of the National Consensus Group and B'Sod Siach. They point to their relationships as a model for Israeli society. "In dialogue groups we search for what we have in common, yet we don't hide that we also deeply disagree," says Freuchtman. "We learn how to disagree, and we learn to respect each other's differences. This has enriched me personally, as a Jew and as a woman."
The real reason for such hatred, Freuchtman insists, is that all Jews see themselves as a tribe or a family. "And in families, emotions are always heated, and issues are never simple. And sometimes you fight, and sometimes you let things go. But because you are a family, you must, ultimately, reach some conclusion, find some solution, for your differences."
But can dialogue groups, valuable as they are for the individual, lead to real societal change? Do they amount to more than "just talk"? And even if they do, can they ever reach enough individuals to form a critical mass of people able to tolerate each other and their differences?
According to Duek, "thousands" of Israelis have already participated in dialogue groups and the demand is growing all the time, but she cannot know if it [sic] "enough."
Nissim Calderon, Tel Aviv University lecturer and author of the recently published, Multi-culturalism vs. Pluralism in Israel, believes that such efforts have a tremendous "symbolic significance," but that the tensions in Israeli society are real, and they require real solutions. Israeli society has no mechanisms for social solidarity, he contends.
"Once, before 1967, we were one of the most egalitarian countries in the world. Now, we are one of the most unjust and unequal societies in the Western world. We have diverted all of our energies to the questions of the territories and war and peace, and we allowed our civil society to collapse. Our educational system has collapsed, our health system has collapsed, and our social welfare system has collapsed. "What is left to bind us together as a society? We must begin to build a pluralistic, multicultural society, based on social democracy," Calderon insists. "We need to reach agreements that acknowledge differences and increase social equality and solidarity. Otherwise, we will continue to hate." Concludes Calderon, "It's come to the point that hating is almost the only way to relate to people you don't agree with. And that is very sad, and very, very frightening."
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