Thursday, July 30, 2009

The ADL Thought Police

Facts have since proven it was largely pro-Israelis who fixed the intelligence that manipulated the US to invade Iraq. That same network has now mobilized to expand that war to Iran, notes Jeff Gates.

When sociology Professor Bill Robinson stared down the Anti-Defamation League, it looked like a victory for academic freedom. Yet was it? Robinson was portrayed as an anti-Semite because he sent an email to students featuring a photo essay critical of Israel that had circulated online for weeks. While University of California administrators dallied, the ADL and its international network turned up the heat—signaling academics worldwide they could be next.

It looked like progress when the faculty at UC Santa Barbara urged “changes in procedures to avoid improprieties and abuses in the future….” But was it? By then the ADL campaign had created the intended chilling effect. This silencing campaign was featured news for five time-critical months while a newly elected US president was reassessing US-Israeli relations. How can anyone calculate the full extent of the damage—not only to Robinson’s reputation and to the stature of the University of California but also to national security?

So where’s the victory? Clearly Robinson deserves acclaim for resisting pressure as the ADL deployed its most seasoned operatives, including Marvin Heir, a rabbi at the Simon Wiesenthal Center in Los Angeles. Only an investigation can identify who mobilized the donor community that threatened UCSB Chancellor Henry Yang with the withdrawal of funds.

What was the motivation for this high profile intimidation campaign? Was the ADL driven simply by the discomfort that two students voiced on their receipt of his email criticizing Israeli policy? Or did the ADL network have its sights on a broader strategic goal?

Facts have since proven it was largely pro-Israelis who fixed the intelligence that manipulated the US to invade Iraq. That same network has now mobilized to expand that war to Iran. A key barrier: the global condemnation of Israel’s brutal assault on Gaza. How does Tel Aviv limit the public relations fallout? On what leverage points should Israel focus to contain the censure while continuing to obscure Israel and pro-Israelis as the common source of this manipulation?

Aiding An Enemy Within?

The Founders faced a similar challenge during the Revolutionary War. How could they distinguish patriots from those loyal to a foreign nation? Knowing the vast risks that accompany betrayal, they lowered the evidentiary standard for treason. Guilt still required proof beyond a reasonable doubt but a conviction only required evidence of “adhering” to an enemy or giving them “aid and comfort.” To remove all doubt about the gravity of this capital offense, they even included those relaxed standards in Article III of the US Constitution.

Fast-forward two centuries to the Information Age and consider the challenge of distinguishing friend from foe. With a new president sworn into office on a platform promising change, how should Tel Aviv continue to conceal the fact that it was pro-Israelis who deceived the US to wage war in Iraq for the expansionist goals of Greater Israel?

During the Democratic presidential primaries, Senator Barack Obama promised no change in US-Israeli relations. But that pledge was made while he and Hillary Clinton were vying for the pro-Israeli vote. What about now—particularly now that he knows Israel scheduled its assault on Gaza between Christmas and the Obama inaugural—knowing that interval would ensure Tel Aviv could operate largely free of official criticism?

Campaigning for president is one thing. Serving as commander in chief is another. What became of the prospects for change after this professor of constitutional law took a constitutional oath that obliged him to defend the US from all enemies—both foreign and domestic?

Based on the success of pro-Israelis in inducing the US to invade Iraq, how does this international network best expand this war to Iran? To succeed again, how can Tel Aviv best control the risk that facts unhelpful to its agenda find their way into the marketplace of ideas?

How about this for a psyops strategy: launch an intimidation campaign on a high-profile campus and portray a critic as an anti-Semite for sharing photos that had been circulating for weeks on the Internet. Then threaten his job, smear his reputation, put him in fear of his physical safety and threaten to withhold critical funding. Then see if on-campus critics still dare to speak out.

While the Faculty Senate should be commended for its stance, one must ask: what took so long? And what will be done to ensure that never again is a professor on any University of California campus subjected to such abuse with the complicity of university administrators? What steps will be taken to ensure this conduct does not recur on campuses nationwide?

Where was UC President Mark Yudof as this intimidation campaign progressed with such well-timed success? What role was played by the pro-Israeli bias of his wife, Judith, the immediate past president of the United Synagogue of Conservative Judaism representing 760 synagogues?

Where was the Board of Regents while this silencing campaign advanced between the invasion of Gaza and President Obama’s White House meeting with Likud Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu? Did Board of Regents chairman Richard Blum harbor an undisclosed bias that precluded him shutting down this ADL operation? How about his wife, pro-Israeli US Senator Dianne Feinstein, chairman of the Senate Intelligence Committee? What role did bias play in a community-wide smear campaign led by Arthur Gross-Schaefer, a Santa Barbara rabbi?

Was this only an offense against a courageous professor who fought on while university administrators retreated? Or was this assault more strategic? The Faculty Senate cannot on its own correct these wrongs because key offenders remain beyond their reach. What they can—and must—do is dismiss any faculty member complicit in this operation, condemn any university administrator who failed to act promptly and rebuke complicit operatives in the community.

The reputation of Prof. Robinson was only grist for the same mill that churned out the phony intelligence required to induce the US to war in Iraq. That same network of deceit now seeks to catalyze war with Iran. Robinson was not the target. His reputation was collateral damage. The target was the mindset of academics that—because of this assault—hesitated to criticize Israel.

Until steps are taken to deter future offenses, these psychological operations (psyops) will continue and the reputation of the US will continue to be collateral damage. Most ominous of all, those who wage war “by way of deception” (the motto of the Israeli Mossad) will continue to displace the facts on which self-governance depends. Progress must be measured by how many educators grasp that what was done to one could be done to all.

Education – The Ultimate Battlefield

In unconventional warfare, the battlefield is the shared field of consciousness. Where does a “consensus” reside? That’s where battles are now waged for public opinion. Those who targeted University of California, Santa Barbara Professor Bill Robinson know that victory flows to those most adept at influencing the consensus mindset. Few know that better than the Anti-Defamation League.

For seasoned combatants, the psyops challenge lies in how best to displace facts with beliefs. The only modern component of this ancient craft is the means for taking such manipulation to global scale. The duplicity is the same regardless whether the operation creates a shared belief in Iraqi WMD, a shared consensus in the infallibility of unfettered financial markets or a shared opinion that Israel is a democracy and an ally. All false yet all widely believed to be true.

Robinson was smeared as an anti-Semite for sharing a photo essay with his students that was critical of Israeli policy. That essay first appeared in Adbusters, a magazine subtitled The Journal of the Mental Environment. That essay has since been posted on a website maintained by UCSB students in defense of academic freedom:

Kalle Lasn, founding editor of Adbusters, is a graphic artist who eventually awoke to the harm he was doing as an advertising executive. An Estonian, he saw firsthand how the Soviets exerted virtual control by manipulating the mental environment. In March 2004, Lasn published an article in Adbusters pointing out that, whereas less than two percent of Americans are Jewish, 26 of the top 50 neoconservatives advocating war in Iraq are Jewish (52%).

He titled the article: “Why Won’t Anyone Say They’re Jewish?” By ADL standards, that meant he was an “anti-Semite”—just for asking the question. What’s since been confirmed is that the bulk of those who fixed the intelligence around that predetermined goal were either Jewish or assets developed by operatives who were Jewish.

Displacement is how warfare is waged in the Information Age: displacing facts with beliefs. Why would anyone expect otherwise? Jewish critics of Israeli policy are “self-hating.” Non-Jewish critics are anti-Semites, Jew haters and/or Holocaust deniers. Although those charges are fast losing their potency from overuse, their toxicity still retains enough force to silence critics—as shown by the global traction gained by this thought control operation on a University of California campus.

Sir Gerald Kaufman, British founder of Independent Jewish Voices, uses his position as a Member of Parliament to criticize Israeli policy. Members of his family perished at the hands of the Nazis and in the Holocaust. As one of the U.K.’s harshest critics of Israeli policies, he routinely compares the Jewish state’s treatment of Palestinians to Nazi Germany’s treatment of Jews—the same analogy for which Robinson (also Jewish) was smeared as an anti-Semite.

Kaufman’s heartfelt speech on Israel’s incursion into Gaza, given on the floor of the House of Commons, is a must-see for those concerned that criticism of Israeli policy remains absent on the floor of the US Congress. [Readers can draw their own conclusions as to who would be motivated to corrupt this YouTube version of his remarks.]

The psyops specialists who coordinated this on-campus silencing campaign know where modern wars are waged: in the shared mindset. The war fought to invade Iraq was waged in the mental environment long before US troops invaded Iraq. Now the US appears guilty by its association with an extremist enclave infamous worldwide for its prowess at waging war by way of deception—and for its aptitude at deceiving the US to fight those wars.

The US invaded Iraq only after facts were displaced by manipulated beliefs. The litany of manufactured beliefs is long and varied: Iraqi WMD, Iraqi ties to Al Qaeda, Iraqi meetings with Al Qaeda in Prague, Iraqi acquisition of yellowcake uranium from Niger and the list goes on. None were factual; all were deployed to deceive. And to advance an Israeli agenda.

Remember the campaign to discredit Joe Wilson overseen by (Jewish) White House operative Lewis Libby, Vice President Cheney’s Chief of Staff? A former US Ambassador to Iraq, Wilson was targeted by Libby for exposing the phony intelligence on uranium from Niger. Campaigns to deceive and discredit have long been key weapons in the Israeli arsenal of deceit.

Remember how Colin Powell was dispatched by pro-Israeli war-planners to the U.N. Security Council just weeks before the March 2003 invasion? Why Powell? To associate his hard-earned credibility with what we now know was false intelligence about Iraq’s mobile biological weapons laboratories. At every turn we find the displacement of facts with beliefs to manipulate decision-makers. That operation successfully discredited not only Powell and the US but also the U.N., an organization that Tel Aviv fears may yet hold Israel accountable for its conduct under international law.

Intelligence on which the US relied was fixed by pro-Israelis in pursuit of a predetermined agenda: the expansionist goals for Greater Israel. Phony intelligence persuaded Washington decision-makers to dispatch the US military to wage a preemptive war not for American interests but for Tel Aviv. When waging unconventional warfare, by the time you see troops on the ground, those complicit are often pre-staging the next venue—as now with the Israeli push to attack Iran.

The ADL-coordinated intimidation campaign launched on the UCSB campus reflects the face of fascism in the Information Age. To respond effectively, the Senate Faculty must provide the tools that enable those targeted to grasp how facts are displaced with induced beliefs—in plain sight and, to date, with legal impunity. No one likes to be deceived. Once “the mark” grasps how they were manipulated, they will see for themselves who is complicit and why. That’s when long overdue accountability can begin.

To focus only on the means (such as the attack on Robinson) leaves the end obscure. And leaves the mark—including UC students—without the tools required to defend against such duplicity. For educators, that shortcoming would transform this potential triumph into an academic tragedy.

Jeff Gates is a widely acclaimed author, attorney, investment banker, educator and consultant to government, corporate and union leaders worldwide. Gates’ latest book is Guilt By Association—How Deception and Self-Deceit Took America to War (2008). His previous books include Democracy at Risk: Rescuing Main Street From Wall Street and The Ownership Solution: Toward a Shared Capitalism for the 21st Century. For two decades, he was an adviser to policy-makers worldwide.

Source: Middle East Online
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Desperate Fanatics: ADL Pounds the Table

The ADL’s shift in emphasis from justifiably combating bigotry (the 'old' anti-Semitism) to being an advocate for Israel by suppressing critics and criticism of Israel’s misconduct (the 'new' anti-Semitism) has been dramatic, notes Alan Sabrosky.

Fanatics, it has been observed, are those who redouble their efforts when they lose sight of their goal, or at least feel its attainment slipping from their grasp. This describes precisely the Anti-Defamation League (ADL), founded in 1913 principally to combat anti-Semitism and closely linked since its inception to the emerging Zionist movement, which increasingly has resorted to the defamation of Israel’s critics as part of its avowed mission to support “the Jewish State by advocating for Israel.”

It really isn’t surprising that the ADL, along with AIPAC (the American-Israel Public Affairs Committee) and the brigade of associated organizations lobbying for Israel, should employ such tactics. Like lawyers obliged to pound the courtroom table when law and evidence are both against their client, the ADL is faced with the uncomfortable reality that both international law and the evidence on the ground condemn Israel as a rogue state, saved from sanctions and embargoes only by US vetoes in the UN Security Council and endless references to an historical Holocaust perpetrated by Europeans, all to sidestep condemnation and culpability for their systemic oppression of Palestinians who had nothing to do with it.

The New Anti-Semitism

The ADL’s shift in emphasis from justifiably combating bigotry (the “old” anti-Semitism) to being an advocate for Israel by suppressing critics and criticism of Israel’s misconduct (the “new” anti-Semitism) has been dramatic. The difficulty is that the so-called “new anti-Semitism” is so wide-ranging in scope that it encompasses almost everyone who is not an Israeli partisan, while anyone who criticizes Israeli war crimes or the Zionist lobby’s support of Israel becomes in their lexicon an indictable accessory after the fact to the architects of the Holocaust.

The ADL understands that while the national mainstream media can be manipulated and elected politicians can be bought, none of that would matter greatly if the American public ever learned what actually happens in the Middle East. Disinformation alone is not enough; critics need to be discredited and, if necessary, destroyed as well. Character assassination is a common place weapon. Outright lies and half-truths confuse the issues. Bribes and coercion in the form of political contributions or so-called “charitable” donations given or withheld add muscle to their efforts. A large stable of syndicated columnists disseminate their propaganda and erode the legitimacy of their victims.

The ADL and its cohorts have enjoyed a remarkable string of successes over the years in implementing this strategy, but a series of recent developments have started to shake its pillars. One is the growth of the internet, and with it the availability of news from sources that the Zionists can neither manage nor contain. Another was the brutal onslaught against Gaza in 2008-2009, conducted to applause from then-President Bush and the US Congress but an upswing in criticism of Israel, especially in the Jewish community. A third was AIPAC’s successful opposition to the appointment of a distinguished diplomat named Charles Freeman to a senior intelligence post, a success undermined in part because the timing dictated that it be done so publicly. And the last was the election in Israel of a government that would openly and accurately be characterized as “fascist” if it had come to power anywhere else, further unsettling many of the ADL’s erstwhile supporters, who could tolerate (barely) Netanyahu’s return but viewed Avigdor Lieberman with distaste or loathing.

The Price of Arrogance

A misreading of these developments plus a measure of arrogance led the ADL to make one of the few serious missteps in its history, when it attempted to use its influence to pressure the University of California to censure a professor at the Santa Barbara campus who had used highly critical graphics of Israel’s assault on Gaza in his class. That the professor, William Robinson, was Jewish made the ADL’s efforts more pointed, because Jewish critics of Israel are more difficult for them to counter – labels like “self-hating Jew” don’t go quite as far as “neo-Nazi” and the like. The details are available elsewhere (see links below), but the ADL ended up with mud on its organizational face when the campus community rallied around Professor Robinson and the administration rejected (albeit belatedly) their effort.

When it looked like the ADL’s action would succeed, the international director of a pro-Zionist group called “Stand With Us” had stated “that the investigation against sociology professor William I. Robinson could set a precedent for more action against Israel critics at other universities.” When it didn’t end the way they expected, they turned out not to be good losers, putting this spin on the outcome at their website: If you are concerned about our college campuses, here is an important bulletin: UCSB professors are free to peddle propaganda designed to indoctrinate students with their personal prejudices. Neither professional conduct codes nor intellectual standards set limits on this freedom. Anything goes. This anarchy is defended in the name of “academic freedom.”

One must concede that pro-Zionist groups are better than most at identifying propaganda and prejudice, if only because they themselves indulge in so much of it. They just aren’t used to losing, but they had better get ready to lose a good deal more in the future. Too much is happening that they cannot either conceal or finesse, and images from Gaza and elsewhere tell a tale to Americans and others that all of the verbiage from the Zionist propaganda machine simply cannot counter indefinitely.

But perhaps ADL and company have the right of it in one respect, and the new definition of anti-Semitism is any criticism of any domestic or foreign policy of the state of Israel, or of any action on the part of some Jews in the Diaspora in support of Israel. So be it. In that case, the rest of us need to understand that the oppression of Palestinians and the victimization of Israel’s neighbors are crimes that cry out for opposition, no matter what label their perpetrators try to hang on it. And if opposing those crimes is now anti-Semitism, according to the ADL, then anti-Semitism in its new form has become a badge of honor to be worn with pride by people of conscience everywhere.

Alan Sabrosky (Ph.D, University of Michigan) is a ten-year US Marine Corps veteran and a graduate of the US Army War College. He can be contacted at

Source: Middle East Online

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