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Monday, December 20, 2010

Defamation of Israel in Seattle

Nadene Goldfoot

Something horrible is happening on December 27th in Seattle, Washington. A group calling itself "The Seattle Mideast Awareness Campaign" has paid King County (Seattle) $1,794 to have 12 buses carry ads on the outside of their buses saying..."Israeli War crimes --Your tax dollars at work." This is accompanied with a picture of a group of children looking at a demolished building. The buses running with these ads pasted on their outside facing all viewers is starting on the anniversary of Operation Cast Lead when Israel finally reacted after 6 years of being attacked by rockets and missiles from Gaza. One can't say that Israel wasn't patient. No one came to Israel's aid to talk to these terrorists and stop them from their attacks, and Israel warned the whole world what it was being forced to do. That irks me so that the world remained silent.

Our own American army had very high in command people commend Israel for trying so hard to keep from harming civilians in Gaza, but the Goldstone Report, UN's South African, a man already poisoned towards Israel for starters as is much of South Africa, turned out a very biased report against Israel. Knowing the UN, I was not surprised.

King County is only concerned that this horrible ad isn't about pornography, alcohol, tobacco and as long as it isn't interfering with public safety or insulting specific groups to the point that a riot could be incited, vandalism could occur or public safety could be threatened. They do not care that this ad is like another rocket attack hitting Israel.

I feel it is more than insulting, but knowing Jews and pacifistic Northwesterners, doubt if there will be a riot about it. It is "inflammatory, demonizing and divisive". Ed Mast, spokesman for the group said it's not meant to be an anti-Israel message. Of course he would say that.

King county Metro Transit spokesperson, Linda Thielke, said that some people will be offended but that's not stopping the buses. She mentioned freedom of speech. They can't object just because they offend some people.

I ask, isn't this bus message displayed for all to see attacking and defaming Israel? Isn't it conveying an unjustly and unfavorable impression of Israel? Isn't it being displayed without just cause and exposing Israel to public contempt? This advertisement is libelous.

Portland's TriMet buses have more scruples. They have commented that such ads would not be permitted on our buses because if an ad is political in nature, it must be a statement of fact in order to be placed on the side of city buses in Portland.

War Crimes? That is slanderous. Since when is defending oneself from thousands if not over a million terrorists a war crime?
PS 2:42pm Councilman Peter von Reichbauer called for a review of the advertising on the buses. He says the ads need to be reviewed and re-evaluated. In a letter he said that dangerous languge can create dangerous environments in a society. Thank you Mr. Reichbauer for your insight to this very grave situation. I just hope that the others will heed your advice and that you all find this advertisement unacceptable behavior.
12/21 2010 update: The sign also says that taxpayers are paying 30 billion each year to Israel in foreign aid. The 12 buses are costing $2,760 to run for a month in the heart of Seattle. That comes to about $7 per bus per day. First editorials neglected to mention the length of duration for the ads.

Resource: by Allen Schauffler/King 5 News
Stand With Us
Northwest Anti-Defamation League

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