Thursday, October 14, 2010

Strange friends and dodgy dollars

PAMELA GELLER (left)claims President is a Muslim and says she has seen rude photos of his mother. RABBI SHIFREN (right),invokes the Alamo for Orange County Republicans. Ex-West Bank settler pitches his campaign against Mexicans and Muslims.
ROBERTA MOORE (above) in London with EDL and the Zionist Federation's Jonathan Hoffman (photo courtesy David Hoffman). What appears to be blue tattoo on her breast was subject of speculation. Someone thought it was a lyre bird, someone else suggested a character from Moomin. But we had no trouble recognising the tattoo sported by this doughty 'defender' of Wales (below), it went with the salutes.
That's the trouble with tattoos, they are not as easy to change as flags.

geller supports english defence league

ENGLISH DEFENCE LEAGUE supporters went on the rampage in
Leicester at the weekend. One brave pack were videoed chucking
stones and chasing a Muslim woman into a cafe, before they had
to join their pals making a strategic withdrawal after coming
face to face with local youth in Highfields.

Someone arranged for an EDL group to join the anti-Muslim 'Ground Zero' protesters
in New York recently, and in Sunday's Observer ( October 10) ,
Mark Townsend reported:
An Observer investigation has established that the EDL has made contact with anti-jihad groups within the Tea Party organisation and has invited a senior US rabbi and Tea Party activist to London this month. Rabbi Nachum Shifren, a regular speaker at Tea Party conventions, will speak about Sharia law and also discuss funding issues.

The league has also developed links with Pamela Geller, who was influential in the protests against plans to build an Islamic cultural centre near Ground Zero. Geller, darling of the Tea
Party's growing anti-Islamic wing, is advocating an alliance with the EDL. The executive director of the Stop Islamisation of America organisation, she recently met EDL leaders in New York and has defended the group's actions, despite a recent
violent march in Bradford.

Curious to know more about this"senior" Rabbi, I learned that he hails from Los Angeles, but lived in a right-wing Zionist settlement in the occupied Palestinian West Bank for a time. Now employed as a teacher in LA he is running for office for the Republicans, and is billed as the "surfin'" rabbi.

'Yet he opted to reside in Kfar Tapuah, a West Bank settlement perched a half-hour from the “lousy” Mediterranean surf. Kfar Tapuah is considered an extremely militant, right-wing, anti-government stronghold. "I’d compare its residents to white militants in the United States" says Hagit Yaari, an Israeli spokesperson for Americans for Peace.

Actually putting the rabbi down as simply an Islamophobe seems a little unfair, he appears equally concerned with stopping more Mexican and other immigrants from coming into his "white America". Whether it worries him that similar prejudice in the 1930s and 1940s kept out Jewish refugees I don't know, as in the piece I read he does not mention the subject, preferring to identify with those who won the West from those pesky Hispanics. But he says he will urge British Jews, who he thinks are "terrified", to support the EDL.

Pamela Geller runs a blog called Atlas Shrugs, and it's a fascinating read if you're not too bothered about the plausibility of her stories. Apparently she has information about President Obama's "sexual peccadillos", as well as his secret birth or conversion to Islam, and why he went to Pakistan -it could only be to score drugs or to meet the jihadis, or perhaps both. What's more she has seen obscene photos of Obama's mother in the nude. If other news channels like CNN have her information they are obviously afraid to use it.

In our pic, Geller is wearing a Little Green Footballs polo, but in Wednesday's Guardian the guy who runs that discussion website, Charles Johnson, regretted they let her use it. "Geller often supports and glorifies people who can only be described as white supremacists and genocidal war criminals. For example, last April, Geller defended South African apartheid advocate and convicted terrorist Eugene Terreblanche, blaming his murder on "black supremacism" and warning that it was the start of "white genocide" in South Africa In July, Geller posted an ode of support to genocidal Serbian war criminal Radovan Karadzic.

No matter. Now that she has made a name for herself, Pamela Geller seems to have access to mainstream media and 'respectable' political company in America, and besides, she is not short of a dollar or two to spread her views. Lawyer David Yerushalmi , whose clients include Stop Islamization of America, and the American Freedom Defence Initiative, was claiming " a victory for the First Amendment,” (i.e. free speech) after a lawsuit requiring the Manhattan Transit Authority to accept posters for buses that decry the so-called Ground Zero mosque and depict the Twin Towers burning. But as the lawyer must know, this kind of free speech does not come free. Apart from the lawsuit costs, Pamela Geller, executive director of Stop Islamization of America, paid $9,500 for the ads and signed a contract last month with CBS Outdoor, the MTA’s advertising representative. "

The New York Times has run a profile of Geller, showing her to be a very wealthy woman, her wealth including a $4-million divorce settlement, a $5-million life insurance on the death of her ex-husband, Michael Oshry (her married name was Pamela G. Oshry), and a portion of the $2-million sale of the Hewlett Harbor home she jointly owned with Oshry. All of which allows her to live in luxury on an entire floor of upper Eastside condo

But as blogger Richard Silverstein tells us, ""What isn’t as well-known, and was whitewashed from her Times profile, is that the basis of her wealth is a criminal enterprise. Michael Oshry, her ex-husband who died of an alleged heart attack in 2008, owned a large Long Island car dealership which operated a scam allowing buyers to purchase cars using fraudulent identities. Such a scam is perfect for organized crime and others seeking to use cars in the commission of felonies. In fact, one such vehicle was used by a former car salesman to murder two New York City police officers. An employee who discovered the scam was murdered execution-style. Geller was listed as a co-owner of the dealership though she denied any knowledge of the fraud. However, the head of the local D.A.’s economic crimes unit is quoted as saying that the owners of the dealership knew about, and possibly actively organized the fraud, which implies that either Geller had to know about it or willfully kept herself in the dark:
Peress said the corruption at Universal “went all the way to the top.

Richard adds, "I note the Times profile reveals that Geller’s personal attorney is David Yerushalmi, who incorporated the non-profit entity under which she and Robert Spencer produce their blogs. This in turn allows David Horowitz to plow funds into their enterprise that have been given on a tax-deductible basis.

Nick Griffin of the British National Party(BNP) has been telling his supporters that the EDL and its allies were Zionist-backed - sour grapes, perhaps, as he put his Holocaust skepticism on a back burner in order to concentrate on playing the anti-Muslim theme, and the Jewish Chronicle remarked on how pro-Israel the BNP had become. As we noted before the BNP's Jewish woman councillor from Essex was despatched to an American neo-con conference.

Judging from the number of known BNP members who have been spotted with the EDL, they are not put off by Griffin's strictures. Searchlight magazine has identified the EDL leader who calls himself 'Tommy Robinson' as being a former BNP member called Stephen Yaxley-Lennon. An article in the October issue of the anti-fascist magazine names other past and present BNP activists in the EDL. "Alan pretty much now the EDL organiser in Newcastle, but in May 2010 he stood as the BNP parliamentary candidate in Newcasstle East where he received 3.5% of the vote

Talking of Newcastle, as Searchlight's Nick Lowles noted on September 24:, "20 to 30 EDL thugs attacked a Socialist Workers Party meeting in Newcastle Wednesday evening. Two doormen were beaten but there are no reports of any arrests. Earlier today two EDL supporters were arrested in Gateshead which led to an EDL demo outside the local police station".

The EDL claims to have a Jewish section now led by the strange figure of Roberta Moore, and seeming to consist largely of Israelis. Ms.Moore herself is Brazilian born but lived in Israel for a time, and says she was a supporter of the Kach party founded by Rabbi Meir Kahane. The Community Security Trust advised Jews to give no support to EDL or Stop the Islamification of Europe, and even the Zionist Federation's Jonathan Hoffman has denied co-operating with them, claiming the photograph of him with Roberta Moore was a fake, thought he had to drop that claim. (The EDL and Zionist Federation had turned up to oppose pro-Palestinian demonstrators at the settler-owned Ahava cosmetics in Covent Garden). Jewish anti-fascists have of course joined others opposing the EDL and similar outfits, and when Stop the Islamification of Europe tried to march on the Harrow mosque, some rabbis raised their voice in solidarity with Muslims.

Though EDL claims it is only against "Islamic extremists" and sharia law, a lot of those who turn out for anti-Islamic demonstrations and street violence seem to be less sophisticated, and neither know nor particularly care whom they are attacking. In Luton they attacked the Sikh mayor, in Dudley they took out their rage on a Hindu temple, and despite recent alliances many of them don't bother to hide their hatred of Jews. But there are signs at times that more intelligent hands are guiding some EDL actions, as when they target left-wing meetings, or use the invitation of a particular Muslim speaker as pretext to threaten a mosque. When the speaker is banned they claim a victory. Judging from the amount of travelling they do, they also don't seem short of funds.

A north London businessman has come out publicly as supporting the EDL:
Alan Lake, a 45-year-old businessman from Highgate, North London, sees the EDL as a potential "street army" willing to be deployed against what they claim is rising Islamification of Britain.

But support and material encouragement also appears to be reaching the anti-Islamic movement from the wilder, and some would say, crazier wing of neo-cons and Zionists in America, and from some Christian fundamentalists there as well. They can overlook the odd tattooed swastika or Hitler salute that seem a hard to break habit among those they are unleashing. And the fascists, whatever their prejudices, don't mind money, by whatever route it reaches them and regardless of the source. I'd also guess that the strings we've been shown so far are not necessarily the only ones behind the scenes

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