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Hasbara Project

Bethany Koval, a brave young activist and canary in the coal mine in the face of Israeli Hasbara

The Hasbara Project, brought to you by Michael Hess, the editor of BBSNews.

BBSNews 2016-01-07 — By Michael Hess. I was very moved when I learned of the raw courage of Bethany Koval, a sixteen year-old girl in New Jersey who is being harassed by Fair Lawn High School Assistant Principal, Frank Guadagnino, her high-school principal for her activism against Israeli Apartheid, in Fair Lawn, New Jersey.

The New York Times is currently reporting that the school has threatened this delightful and well informed young lady with a “bullying” charge under New Jersey state law because she said she was glad a “pro-Israel” student, not identified by name, unfriended her on Twitter. If that passes for “bullying” in New Jersey then they have deeper problems in that state than just rogue school administrators upset that the truth about Israel has reached teenagers all over this country. The school reportedly has now clammed up.

Bethany Koval, a brave young activist and canary in the coal mine. Image Credit: Benny's Twitter page.

Bethany Koval, a brave young activist and canary in the coal mine. Image Credit: Benny’s Twitter page.

All this of course has been bubbling as an undercurrent in the United States for quite sometime, it is impossible to support an Apartheid Israel and given that this has gone on for not just fifty years but dating all the way back to the founding of Israel in the Mandatory state of Palestine. (Yup. Palestine was and is a state.)

In the meantime I have been in a comment conversation with “Janetb” over at Al-Monitor that has seen Janet supporting the book banning currently underway in Israel, and of course, the conversation quickly turned to the usual Hasbara bullshit that is so common to advocates for Israeli Apartheid.

In answer to some of that Hasbara, I penned a comment to her and wrote the following article based on that comment to answer with actual facts and not right wing crazy fantasy. Here is what Janet wrote me when pretending to not understand the breadth of the problem in demographics. The United States government certainly understands as Secretary of State John Kerry made clear that the One State is on the immediate horizon (and word is, the US is no longer going to try to do anything about it):

One man, one vote here—including Arabs…. :-)…. !

When Israel became a state, all Arabs in it received FULL citizenship. When East Jerusalem was annexed in ’67, all residents (Arabs) were offered FULL citizenship. Those who did not want to accept Israeli citizenship because they do not want to be seen as recognizing the state of Israel, were nevertheless given permanent residence status in order to give them full health benefits, full welfare benefits, education benefits, as well as being able to vote in municipal elections. All this for folks who are openly hostile to the state….:-)….! If Israel had annexed the West Bank, citizenship would have been given to all Arabs living there. Proposals to annex the West Bank now call for giving citizenship to the Arabs living there. From your comments, I guess you are unaware of these facts. Consider the possibility that perhaps you get your ‘information’ from biased sources. I would suggest you check out what I say here before replying.

So which Arabs in Israel are disenfranchised??? Where are these mysterious “thousands” and “millions”???

Michael’s answer:

Ask Bethany Koval who is “disenfranchised.” She is sixteen years-old and infinitely more informed than you are even as she is being intimidated by her school principal for pointing out on her Twitter account how Israel is an Apartheid state, outside of the purview of the school. Her Constitutional rights are being violated by this bantam rooster of an “educator.” It is so easy for people like you to simply ignore the loudly ringing alarm bells, such as the news from Reuters four months ago with a follow-up finally by The Forward about the fact that the population of Greater Israel has now reached parity.

It is so easy for people like you to ignore that Israel declared a state on May 14th under entirely different borders than what Israel holds now by military force and illegal colonist’s state sponsored terror, then brazenly lied to the UN Security Council a few days later and claimed that they intended to abide by UNGA 181 with no intention to apply Israeli sovereignty outside of the borders that they declared under the UN GA resolution of November 29th, 1947.

Q. “Over which areas of Palestine do you actually exercise control at present?

A. Over the entire area of the Jewish State as defined in the Resolution of the General Assembly of the 29th November, 1947. In addition, the Provisional Government exercises control over the city of Jaffa; Northwestern Galilee, including Acre, Zib, Base, and the Jewish settlements up to the Lebanese frontier; a strip of territory alongside the road from Hilda to Jerusalem; almost all of new Jerusalem; and of the Jewish quarter within the walls of the Old City of Jerusalem. The above areas, outside the territory of the State of Israel, are under the control of the military authorities of the State of Israel, who are strictly adhering to international regulations in this regard. The Southern Negev is uninhabited desert over which no effective authority has ever existed.” [Emphasis mine.]

It is so easy for people like you to forget that this was what President Truman recognized in 1948! The lies and Hasbara have continued so long that most people are too confused to look at the primary documents, much to Israel’s peril. Why on Earth do you think it is still an issue? Why do you not understand that the entire Western world including the United States deems the Israeli colonies that are in Palestine to be illegal?

If you look for Article 49, paragraph 6 of the 4th Geneva Convention, which fully applies to Israel then you will know. If you look at Article 2, paragraph 4 of the UN Charter you will know why. If you read the speech from Sir Alan Duncan, a Conservative MP in Britain given after the Upper House voted in Britain to recognize the state of Palestine, you will know the truth.

For instance, apparently you are not aware that all of Israel’s actions in Jerusalem have always been illegal (just like the Golan Heights) under international law and UN Security Council resolutions. There are seven of them thus far. This fact is not up for debate and it is precisely why the US Embassy has not been moved to Jerusalem because it would be illegal. The following is from UN Security Council resolution 478, in effect for the last thirty-five years and still Israel is in full and complete violation of it:

“Determines that all legislative and administrative measures and actions taken by Israel, the occupying Power, which have altered or purport to alter the character and status of the Holy City of Jerusalem, and in particular the recent “basic law” on Jerusalem, are null and void and must be rescinded forthwith…

Those States that have established diplomatic missions at Jerusalem to withdraw such missions from the Holy City…

There is no legal way for Israel to “annex” (steal by force) the city of Jerusalem, there never has been and Israel has never held legal sovereignty there, their presence is enforced by military force. For more on just how illegal it is, I urge you to delve more deeply into the bedrock international legal principle of ‘territory acquired by war is inadmissible’ that you will also find enshrined in UNSCR 242 (and 338).

“Emphasizing the inadmissibility of the acquisition of territory by

If you believe otherwise then you must allow that Vladimir Putin is well within his “rights” to steal Crimea by military force and threaten Ukraine which of course is illogical and false. Your apathy towards international law would also apply to other conflicts around the world, it would be a free-for-all because it is customary international law that a nation can’t use its military to seize another’s territory and resources. Why would you want Israel to live by the sword?

It is so easy for people like you to ignore the fact that if Israel does not pull out of Palestine now, then the long prayed for Jewish national home envisioned for thousands of years will be destroyed, ironically by useful idiots like you. No terrorists or UNGA 194 needed. It is the corrosive nature of being an illegal occupier state for the last half a century that has become a self-fulfilling prophecy of resistance and destruction.

You are just spouting long-debunked fallacies along with your book banning nonsense. People who seek to ban books for content here in the United States are looked upon as repugnant intellectual lepers. Crazy book burner people. Like the thought of Israel “annexing” the West Bank. There is no such thing as Israel legally “annexing” territory outside of Israel by force any more than there is for Russia. This is a ludicrous and dangerous thought, as crazy as the Temple Institute people funded by the Israeli government. (Where’s their Yellow Star?)

The Obama administration gets it. Israel will now become the One State. And that means Israel gets all of the current 6.3 Million Palestinians to 6.3 Million Jews currently in Greater Israel. Enjoy what you have wrought. By blithely ignoring the facts of Israel’s birth and its life, you have helped in destroying the last chance the Jewish national home ever had to attain actual democratic status.

The illegal colonists get the vote, yet the millions of Palestinians that they lord over do not get a vote. Just like it used to be in the United States when black folks were denied the vote. Israel will no doubt continue to steal land and resources outside of Israel from Palestine and it cannot kill more than 6 Million Palestinians as we all said Never Again, so it will be forced to give Palestinians equal representation and cease remaining a Jewish majority state… But that ain’t gonna happen.

What is far more likely is that Israel will change its declaration of independence (they never completed a constitution even though the declaration calls for it, the reason for that is obvious), and become officially a fully-fledged Apartheid state that quite frankly already exists, and will cease being the dream of a Jewish national home.

It is so easy for people like you to ignore the fact that it is actually you, not any terrorist, who is the root of the problem in any possible future for the state of Israel.

Supporting the state of Israel as an Apartheid state as you do is the surest way to ruin. There are many links to primary documents in this article, avail yourself of them and you will understand why the entire planet except for Israel deems the “settlements” (in reality colonies in another country) illegal, lock stock and barrel. The only way for Israel to survive is to follow the rule of law and end the crimes against humanity that it has been committing for decades against indigenous Palestinians. I hope that clears it up.


[Editor’s Note: This article is dedicated to the memory of my sister Janet, who had a great deal respect for the rule of law and human rights, and human dignity. And she knew her older brother would never waiver in the pursuit of the truth.]


Editor’s Note to Hasbara trolls. You have had your run all over the Internet with your antisemitic views and lies, but you will not enjoy a free ride here at BBSNews. It’s my view that you have already damaged the Jewish state most likely beyond redemption on the Internet. You get one chance, and one chance only to address the material. If you cannot be an adult, and discuss verifiable, very basic facts as opposed to Hasbara propaganda, you will be banished. The Hasbara Project is news intended for an adult audience for adults that are literate enough to talk about the inevitable future of Israel and Palestine, and reality-based solutions firmly grounded in the rule of law and UN resolutions. Here at BBSNews, you will not be allowed to disrupt a comment thread with tired lies that have been debunked for decades if not a century or more. You Have Been Warned.