“The belief that security can be obtained by throwing a small state to the wolves is a fatal delusion.”

Biased BBC contributor Alan notes that the BBC is adopting its usual casual ‘Israel is the Devil’ stance in their report on Gunther Grass and his poem.

The BBC attitude adds immeasurably to the febrile anti-Israel/Semitic atmosphere that is being whipped up. The BBC continually says it does not have the time or space to put the Israel/Palestine conflict into any context for each report but it does find time to add on the casualty figures for two years after the Gaza conflict and in the recent report on Hamas executions manages to slot in an end piece explaining away Hamas’ actions by blaming Israel.

What the BBC does not tell us is that the Gaza assault came as a result of 10 years of missiles raining down on Israel….what they don’t tell you is that Israel suffered over 1000 dead in a variety of attacks against them in those years. So when the BBC says Israel only suffered 13 casualties in Gaza a real view of events would put the reason for the assault into perspective….not so much disproportionate but Just Retribution.

Their report is curiously uncritical and accepting in tone of the poem which says Israel is The threat to world peace, her nuclear weapons are somehow more unacceptable than the US’s or Britain’s or France’s or North Korea’s or Russia’s.

Curious that Grass picks on Israel and not Pakistan. Another nuclear power…and highly unstable…not long ago people were expecting a nuclear war between India and Pakistan.

Is it not Iran, amongst many others in the region, that threaten Israel’s existence? Yes.

Strange Israel is endangering world peace by defending itself. Though how like the modern Western elite’s relative world view….just lie back and accept any indignity for a peaceful existence….and blame ‘The Jew’ for wars.

Churchill sums it all up, the moral equivalence, the cowardly sacrificing another country, a ‘people’ in effect, for ostensibly the delusion of peace but in reality Grass and his defenders don’t like Israel, its very existence jars with them…..and they would look the other way if it were ‘somehow’ to disappear. He says he likes Israel and wants it to exist, how kind, but his actions say otherwise……have a look at Der Spiegel and what is being said….’At the moment, Iran is feeling the pressure of sanctions. But the time has finally come to put some pressure on Israel, as well. Mind you, whoever says such a thing is not trying “to relativize the guilt of the Germans by making the Jews into perpetrators,” as Mathias Döpfner says.'(http://www.spiegel.de/international/world/0,1518,826180,00.html)…and this is an article which wilfully ignores evidence from all sources including the IAEA that Iran looks to be developing a nuclear weapon capability.

What really gives away Grass’s politics is his attack on the “hypocrisy of the West” …whilst at the same time claiming to be a realist…if he was a realist he would understand ‘real politik’…and why most of the products in his house he imported from Communist China.

Back to Churchill….
“The belief that security can be obtained by throwing a small state to the wolves is a fatal delusion.”

“All is over. Silent, mournful, abandoned, broken, Czechoslovakia recedes into the darkness. We have passed an awful milestone in our history, when the whole equilibrium of Europe has been derailed, and these terrible words have for the time being been pronounced against the Western democracies, ‘Thou art weighed in the balance, and found wanting’.”
– Lamenting the abandonment of Czechosolovakia by Britain at Munich in 1938

This is the BBC report….although it gives views condemning Grass there is a lack of analysis of his comments…..something critical for a full and truthful view of what Grass claims. Especially as we are told that the Israel/Palestine conflict, if it can be solved, will bring world peace. Who am I to doubt…but you would think the BBC would therefore put more effort into its reports… in the interest of World Peace that is.

‘Grass, a Nobel laureate, recently criticised Israel in a poem.
In it, Grass condemned German arms sales to Israel, and said the Jewish state must not be allowed to launch military strikes against Iran. Grass attacks Israel’s nuclear programme.
“Why do I say only now… that the nuclear power Israel endangers an already fragile world peace?

But he has been defended by some sections of Israeli liberal opinion.

Writing in the Haaretz newspaper, columnist Gideon Levy criticised the ban on Grass.
“A situation in which any German who dares criticise Israel is instantly accused of anti-Semitism is intolerable”, he said, “after we denounce the exaggeration, after we shake off the unjustified part of the charge, we must listen.” ‘

Note the final words….’we must listen’…to Grass.

BBC having the final word there?

What must be said

Why have I been silent, silent for so long?,
Our generals have gamed it out,
Confident the west will survive.
We people have not even been considered.

What is this right to “preventive war”?
A war that could erase the Iranian people.
Dominated by it’s neighbor, pulsing with righteousness
Smug in the fact that it is they, not Iran,
Who have the Bomb.

Why have I so far avoided to identify Israel by it’s name?,
Israel and it’s ever increasing nuclear arsenal,
Beyond reproach, Uncontrolled, uninspected.

We all know these things
Yet we all remain silent, fearful of being labeled:

Considering Germany’s past these labels stick
So we call is “business”, “reparation” take your pick,
As we deliver yet another submarine.
As we provide to Israel the means to deliver annihilation.
I say what must be said.

Why did I stay silent until now?
Because I’m German, of course.
I’m tainted by a stain I cannot wash out
I’m silent because I want so badly to make it right
To put my sins in the past and leave them silently there.

Why did I wait to say it until now?
And write these words with the last of my ink?
Declaring that Israel threatens world peace?
Because it is true and it must be said,
Tomorrow will be too late.

We Germans now carry a new burden of sin on our shoulders
Through the weapons we have sold
We are helping to carry out this foreseeable tragedy
No excuse will remove our stain of complicity.

It must be said. I won’t be silent
I’ve had enough of the hypocrisy;
Please shed the silence with me,
The consequences are all too predictable.
It’s time to demand free and permanent control
of BOTH Israel’s nuclear arsenal
AND Iran’s nuclear facilities
enforced with international supervision.

It’s the only way, in a land convulsed with insanity,
Israelis, Palestinians, everybody, will survive.
And we too, will survive.

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  1. Jim Dandy says:

    That’s a pretty straight, bland and balanced piece. It’s not meant to analyse. And it’s Levy’s words they quote, not the bbc’s. Not sure you can read anything into the last words.

    Grass is an arse, but Israel weakens its position by this declaration. Nick Cohen’s article in the Speccie calls it right.


    • Span Ows says:

      Certainly bland but not balanced:

      What is this right to “preventive war”?
      A war that could erase the Iranian people.
      Dominated by it’s neighbor, pulsing with righteousness…

      Preventative ‘war’ or preventative ‘strike’? They are worlds apart. ‘Erase’ the Iranian people? Has he seen a map? Doe she know that even the worst war imaginable wouldn’t come even close to this? or is he trying to assuage or excuse the Iranian comments about wiping out Israel? I think he is.

      “Dominated” by it’s neighbour…WTF?!!!

      “pulsing with righteousness…” or defending itself?


      • alan says:

        Agree fully with Span Ows….but would add that the report is not balanced because it does not give the reason Israel is involved in so much conflict.

        Israel has no interest in war, it is forced to defend itself. Even the Jewish religion does not impose itself on others…it does not seek recruits…which is why there are so few Jews in the world (even without Hitler and fellow traveller’s best efforts).

        BBC attitude very important…it informs behaviour not just of Muslims but the people in positions of influence…even if just by example….even now Actress Emma Thompson is declaiming against an Israeli theatre group coming here and demanding a boycott.

        However she and her friends are more than happy to hop on a plane to the US and grab a few million Yankee dollars for very little work…despite all the wars America is involved in…..and indeed Britain itself…not forgetting the illegal occupation and settlement of the Falklands!

        Guess cash comes before principles.

        And I note the BBC, whilst not bothering to give Israel’s side has now found the time to give Grass’s side….and note the usual sting in the tail …..


        ‘It has been a given in Germany that it would stand shoulder-to-shoulder with Israel.

        What Guenter Grass has done is to open up debate on that relationship.’

        Thank god for people like Gunther Grass who open up debate…er except about why Israel is under attack!


        • Jim Dandy says:

          Some good points, although the piece to which you link doesn’t just give Grass’s side: it gives prominence to antipathetic views too.

          I have been black-balled from the south east London dinner party circuit (such as it is) for my Zionism. And the bbc’s coverage of the Israel/Palestine is where I am closer to the consensus on this site than I am on other issues. I think their sometimes Cock-eyed coverage is born of an overeagerness to provide an insipid attempt at balance (evident here), but also of more concern a particularly British bourgeois view of the situation (not unique to the left). I do not think the more extreme views expressed here of anti- semitism are right.


    • Dave s says:

      I have the right to refuse to let into my home anyone I don’t want to. It is an ancient right. A sovereign nation has the same right and always has had.
      It is only in an increasingly insane West that this right is questioned by increasingly irrational fools. Grass is not welcome in Israel. That is their business not ours. But then the notion of country and sovereignity is now so alien to the liberals and the left they simply cannot understand it.


    • alan says:

      Is this a younger you Jim?


    • Sue says:

      To Jim Dandy,
      “Israel weakens its position by this declaration.”
      Although I read Nick Cohen’s argument with interest I disagree that Israel weakens its position by declaring Grass persona non grata.

      It’s all very well striving for some sort of perfect-world, pollyanna-ish moral high ground, ‘don’t stoop to your enemy’s level’, “don’t make yourself as bad as them” kind of token superiority – if you’re in a strong position in the first place.

      Israelis don’t need any more critics, denigrators or bashers who misunderstand and misrepresent the situation as Grass has with his wretched poem, reminiscent of Caryl Churchill’s nasty little production “ Seven Jewish Children” which the Guardian was so fond of.

      People are so quick to apply clearly false moral equivalence to the hypothetical nuclear capabilities of Iran and Israel, (Why should Israel be allowed to have nuclear weapons and not Iran?) yet they abandon the moral equivalence principle when it comes to restricting the freedom of ones enemies. Only Israel, which is conveniently judged ‘civilised’ and ‘Western’ is expected to rise above such things, while Iran is now given a free pass because they’re a bit whey and a bit woo.
      Not that I support random bannings and stiflings of freedom of expression. Or, for that matter the proliferation of nuclear weapons. But we’re not in a perfect world, are we? And ‘best of a bad job’ principle says Israel can ban who it bloody well wants to.


      • Sue says:

        However, I don’t think the BBC’s article is particularly biased. It’s not the article. It’s the fact that the BBC’s whole presentation of Israel related news (over decades) is bound to give your average man-on-the-Clapham omnibus and his good lady wife the impression that Gunter has got-it-about-right.
        There are some nuanced discussions on this topic in the articles and comments here and here.


      • Andy S. says:

        NEVER, to my knowledge, has Israel supplied terrorist groups with viable nuclear devices. Can Jim D. be sure that Iran would be so circumspect?


  2. Span Ows says:

    Speigel link doesn’t work: you have the )…and included


  3. john in cheshire says:

    Is this the same Gunter Grass who finally admitted that he had worked for the Stasi during the Communist era of divided Germany. He spied on his friends. The man’s an utter disgrace and if he had any common decency he’d spend the rest of his life with his mouth firmly shut.


  4. Sultan says:

    Perhaps Israel should have issued an arrest warrant instead, à la Tzipi Livni.


  5. David Preiser (USA) says:

    Grass is just yet another European who can’t forgive the Jews for the Holocaust.


    • Demon says:

      Powerful comment there David. Made me say “Oooh” aloud. I must remember that one.


  6. Adi says:

    He’s also on the record for opposing a unified Germany.

    Another product of European anti-semitism propped by the Al-beeb.

    What an un-natural “coincidence”.


  7. Mat says:

    Well now I might be wrong but if I want a opinion about how the horrors of the middle east can be righted I won’t ask a German who grew up under Hitler and all the propaganda /control and who also served with the SS !


  8. Wayne X says:

    I have no axe to grind or particular loyalties to Palestinians, Iranians or Israelis, or indeed any Arab countries but have for years wondered why the BBC always takes such a harsh line against Israel. I am just a casual observer from the sofa but am very aware that any spokesperson for the Israelis is always treated with hostility, rudeness and contempt.

    It is plain to see therefore that the annihilation of Israel would not worry the BBC too much but I cannot see why. There are those of course that would present a different argument and see the BBC point of view but I can only repeat that this is the way I see it as an outsider. I therefore ask the question to those that agree with my point of view, please explain to me why you think the BBC people behave in this way. To those that disagree with me but are able at least to see that that there is at least a communication problem on one side or the other also tell me why we feel this bias. The folks at the BBC may be liberal, wet or left wing but whatever label you want to put on them where on earth does this hatred come from?


    • Biodegradable says:

      Not for nothing antisemitism is called “The Oldest Hatred”.


    • David Preiser (USA) says:

      Your comment brings me yet again to wonder why at the BBC it’s wrong to blame all Mohammedans by association with Islamic terrorism and mass murder but it’s acceptable to treat Jews everywhere as guilty by association with all of Israel’s mistakes. I’m still waiting for the BBC to report on what’s happened to the Jews in Malmö, even though they did two reports fretting about anti-Muslim sentiment there. Even the mayor admitted that Jews deserved the trouble they faced because of their support for Israel. The BBC doesn’t dare touch this, and I think it’s because too many of them agree.

      There’s a subconscious anti-Jewish sentiment lurking in the minds of many. It’s not overt, and many people aren’t even aware of it, and would react unhappily if called on it. Far too many people still believe that Jews have an undue influence on government, banks, and business. I’m not saying there’s zero influence, or no rich Jews in positions of power in some institutions. I’m talking about a notion that Jews are practically all-powerful in certain countries. Similarly, many people ascribe near-omnipotent power to the Jewish Lobby (what many call “Israel-Firsters”). Dual loyalty is a common theme, even among those who constantly abjure the rest of us against tarring all Muslims with the acts of a subsection of them.

      I personally know people who believe that the US Social Security agency instructs its minimum-wage clerks to issue Social Security cards (required to get a job) to any foreigner coming in with a Jewish-sounding name. This is very silly on its face, but it speaks volumes about their suspicions of Jewish power and hegemony. But if you tell them this is anti-Jewish sentiment, they don’t want to hear it, and stress their anti-racist bona fides.

      It’s not the same as age-old European anti-Semitism, the view of Jews as hook-nosed, hunched over, greedy figures who are genetically inferior, etc. But it’s still a casual demonization on a very basic level.

      There are many people at the BBC who feel this way. It comes out occasionally when they mention the Jewish Lobby, and the power of Jewish money and Jewish votes in the US, and – ludicrously – Israel’s power at the UN. I know most Beeboids will simply laugh and roll their eyes at such a suggestion, as we know they get complaints about being controlled by Jews. Mark Thompson is married to a Jewess, Robert Peston is a Jew, and so on. They even tried to use a couple of Jewish reporters as amulets (I say that’s what it was, despite their protestations to the contrary) at the BBC Jerusalem bureau. That didn’t work out too well.

      Perfectly reasonable objections to some things Israel does or has done get lost in the general anti-Israel malaise. This results in an editorial policy which ends up demonizing Israel at every opportunity, although the BBC disputes this. And so Jews are guilty by association because of this lurking suspicion of Jewish power.


      • Wayne X says:

        Thank you David for your reasoned and eminently sensible reply, I am very grateful. Of course you would think an organisation like the BBC, that is full of such talented intellectual people, would be able to overcome their prejudices in this enlightened and politically correct age. However, perhaps they are not chosen for talent or intelligence but because they are photogenic or have nice legs and it seems a thick regional accent is now the rage too. That will have to do I suppose. Once again though, I am very obliged to you.


  9. Merlin says:

    Off topic folks but thought this would put a spring in your step. Very unlikely case for successful appeal to boot.



    • Wayne X says:

      Good news!
      There may be a few more to go as well.
      I’ll order a ship straight away.
      It will be unsinkable won’t it?
      And what shall we call it?


    • David Preiser (USA) says:

      Oh, dear. A few Beeboids having second thoughts about surrendering British sovereignty to EU Human Rights courts, perhaps?


  10. Dave s says:

    Grass is making the usual liberal mistake in assuming the Israeli- Iran situation is like the Cold War. It is not.
    Russia and the USA both possessed nuclear weapons and could destroy each other. But it never ever looked as if either had the will to do so. Quite the reverse in fact.
    This is not true of Iran and Israel. Israel , if it has nuclear weapons, would act like the US or the USSR. Iran , if it gets the capablility, has never shown that it would use restraint. Rather the reverse in that Iran has called for the death of Israel. How on earth can Israel allow Iran to get the bomb? How can anyone? . It is a rogue state following an agenda of hate.


    • Mat says:

      David perfect summing up Israel is a state in service of it people where as probably more to Grass’s liking Iran is a people in service of the state !


  11. chrisH says:

    Pretty poor poem-might read better in the original German, or whatever tongue Grass chose to use.
    It is Israels sovereign right not to let him enter the country, although it`s only typical of the liberal mindset as far as I can see-so surprises me a bit that the Israelis don`t want him in. They seem to put up with much worse all too often don`t they?
    Still Israel alone knows its reasons, and I respect them…surely Grass can yell it over the border from Palestine or get himself a gripe section on Iranian Press TV regarding freedom of speech-or executing gays from cranes, if he`s feeling really brave…which(being liberal) he`d never be!

    Easy to be brave from Israel or Berlin….don`t see his poetry readings around the “public libraries and arts centres” of Waziristan catching on as an idea for him though…typical safe leftie hawking his conscience around, so a hero to the Beeb.


  12. George R says:

    “Gunter Grass and his words have caused damage but they will not accomplish the triumph of evil”

    by Saba Farzan



  13. Demon says:

    Why are the left worrying about people being banned from entering countries. How hard did they fight to prevent that Dutch politician entering the UK? >:(


  14. Jim Dandy says:

    Has the BBC reported the John Derbyshire sacking? Brits behaving badly abroad and all that.


    • David Preiser (USA) says:

      They’ll have difficulty doing so because it hurts the “All Republicans are racist” Narrative. The National Review editor made it very clear that what Derbyshire wrote was beyond the pale (no pun intended). It’ll be a very brave News Online editor who gets an article up crediting white Catholic conservatives for their strong stance against racism, especially from a magazine which is a prominent enemy…sorry…opponent of the President in this election year.


    • David Preiser (USA) says:

      Liddle is calling the NR folks hypocrites for being racists who fired Derbyshire for writing a racist screed, and smearing a good chunk of the US for being racists as well. You can take the man out of the BBC…..

      I suppose that’s meant to give him street cred to assuage criticism of this faux-libertarian pose.

      I read about this yesterday, and quickly moved on as I gave up reading Derbyshire (and the National Review) years ago. I wanted to think his piece was some sort of clever Swiftian parody, but I know better from reading his past stuff. The comments on it at TakiMag, sadly, will only prove to Liddle and the BBC that they’re right.


  15. Leftie-Loather says:

    There’s plenty of trouble making scumbags that Britain shouldn’t have allowed in. Bloody well done to Israel for telling Gunther Grass straight that he’s not welcome and so to get stuffed! If he did still try entering Israel they’d just deport him straight away, not piss about for years like they do here costing British tax payers a bloody fortune to get shot of illegals and undesirables!