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Thread: Israeli interference in UK elections

  1. #1

    Default Israeli interference in UK elections

    REVEALED: Secret tapes expose Israeli influence over UK Conservative Party

    #IsraelLobby


    Israeli embassy-linked political operators discuss 'taking down' foreign minister Alan Duncan and boast of planting parliamentary questions




    Shai Masot, political officer for the Israeli Embassy, speaking with Al Jazeera's undercover reporter (Al Jazeera)



    David Hearst


    Peter Oborne
    Saturday 7 January 2017 10:37 UTC


    Last update:
    Sunday 8 January 2017 10:35 UTC





    LONDON - A senior political officer at the Israeli Embassy in London has been secretly filmed talking about how he would like to "take down" UK foreign office minister Alan Duncan, a vocal opponent of illegal Israeli settlement building in the West Bank.
    He said Duncan, who is one of the few Conservative ministers to speak out over settlements, was causing "a lot of problems". He also called Boris Johnson, the foreign secretary, "an idiot".
    In a separate conversation with the embassy staffer, Crispin Blunt, the chairman of the Commons Foreign Affairs Committee, was described as being "on the hit list" for his views which were "strongly pro-Arab rather than pro-Israel".
    The revelations provoked an immediate political reaction, with Desmond Swayne, a former Conservative minister and parliamentary aide to former prime minister David Cameron, calling for the incident to be "investigated thoroughly".
    "What we cannot have is Israel acting in the UK with the same impunity it enjoys in Palestine," he told Middle East Eye. "This is clearly interference in another country's politics of the murkiest and most discreditable kind."
    In a statement on Saturday night, the Israeli embassy said that Mark Regev, Israel's ambassador to the UK, had spoken to Duncan to apologise and that Regev had made clear that the embassy considered the remarks to be "completely unacceptable".
    PRESS RELEASE @IsraelinUK and @foreignoffice comments regarding remarks made by embassy employee pic.twitter.com/ma6skHB9os
    — Yiftah Curiel (@yiftahc) January 7, 2017
    A spokesperson for the UK's foreign office also confirmed that Regev had apologised.
    "The Israeli ambassador has apologised and is clear these comments do not reflect the views of the embassy or government of Israel," he said. "The UK has a strong relationship with Israel and we consider the matter closed."
    PETER OBORNE: Duncan's opposition to settlements makes him Israeli target

    The undercover recording, which exposes how Israeli influence extends to senior levels of the governing Conservative Party, also includes a conversation in which an assistant to another Conservative minister described how she used her position to plant parliamentary questions supportive of Israel.
    Shai Masot, Political Officer for the Israeli Embassy (Al Jazeera)
    The conversation was filmed by Al Jazeera's investigative unit at a restaurant in London last year and features Shai Masot, the embassy's political officer, and Maria Strizzolo, a former parliamentary assistant to Robert Halfon, a junior education minister and former Conservative Party deputy chairman. She also mentions meeting Masot's bosses at the Ministry of Strategic Affairs several times in Israel.
    Speaking to an undercover reporter posing as a pro-Israel political activist, Strizzolo boasted of how she had taken on Halfon, the MP for Harlow in Essex, when he was a backbencher: "And now look at him, he's a minister, so I'm not too crap!"
    Machiavellian-inspired operator

    Masot, who in an online profile deactivated on Saturday described Niccolo Machiavelli as his "God," then asked her whether she could do the opposite: "Can I give you some MPs that you can take down?"
    Strizzolo, who is now a UK government employee working at the Department for Education's Skills Funding Agency, replied: "Well you know, if you look hard enough I'm sure that there is something they are trying to hide."
    Masot said: "Yeah, I have some MPs."
    Strizzolo said: "Let’s talk about it."
    Masot then told the reporter: "No, she knows which MPs I want to take down."
    Strizzolo replied that it would be good to remind her, and Masot then said: "The deputy foreign minister."
    This did not come as a surprise to Strizzolo, who replied: "You still want to go for it?"
    Masot said: "No, he's doing a lot of problems."
    Shai Masot and Maria Strizzolo (Al Jazeera)
    Strizzolo then recounted an encounter between Duncan and Halfon, her boss, in which she alleged that Duncan had threatened to "destroy" him. Halfon allegedly reported the incident to the party whips, who told him to "calm down".
    The conversation about what to do about Duncan then continued, with Masot saying: "Never say never, yeah but ...", and Strizzolo suggesting: "A little scandal maybe?"
    In response to the revelations, Crispin Blunt told MEE that the "Israelis need to explain what's going on".

    "While this apparent activity of a representative of a foreign state in the politics of the United Kingdom is formally outrageous and deserving of investigation, the real questions should be for the state of Israel itself," he said.
    "Israel's future peace and security is not being served by ignoring the substantial peace lobby in both Israel and the worldwide Jewish community and working to undermine those foreign politicians who share that perspective."
    Duncan became a target for Israel in 2014 when he produced a blistering attack on Israeli settlements in the West Bank, which he said amounted to a wicked cocktail of occupation and illegality, a system akin to apartheid which brought shame on the Israeli government.
    The speech was one of the strongest attacks on Benjamin Netanyahu's government by a British front-bench politician.
    Duncan said: "Settlements are illegal colonies built in someone else's country. They are an act of theft, and what is more something which is both initiated and supported by the state of Israel."
    BDS is not the only tactic against Israeli occupation, but it is working

    The exchange about Duncan is among hours of conversations recorded over a period of months, which reveal how Masot sought to manipulate the political debate over Israel and Palestine within both the Conservative Party and the opposition Labour Party.
    The Al Jazeera reporter gained Masot's trust and infiltrated his circle so effectively that he was offered a job by the embassy to help combat the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) campaign in Britain.












    The strategy, which is described in the tapes by a senior member of AIPAC, the influential pro-Israel lobbying organisation in the US, is to detach Britain from pro-Palestinian sentiment in Europe and bring the UK closer to the US.
    The embassy tapes reveal the extent to which Israel has penetrated the Conservative Party through an organisation called the Conservative Friends of Israel (CFI) for whom both Halfon and Strizzolo had worked.
    The strength of Conservative support for Israel was highlighted last week in comments by a spokesperson for Prime Minister Theresa May, which appeared to criticise US Secretary of State John Kerry's recent speech in which he said that Israeli government policy was being driven by "extreme elements".
    "We do not believe that it is appropriate to attack the composition of the democratically elected government of an ally," the spokesperson said.
    The Daily Mail featured a response critical of May headlined, Poisonous conduct is a disgrace: Minister who served in David Cameron's government says it is time to end the problem of Israel buying UK policy, in which the former minister wrote: "The reason is clear: the Conservative Party wants pro-Israel donors' money, and principle in the Government's foreign policy has been relegated.
    "Lots of countries try to force their views on others, but what is scandalous in the UK is that instead of resisting it, successive Governments have submitted to it, taken donors' money, and allowed Israeli influence-peddling to shape policy and even determine the fate of Ministers. Even now, if I were to reveal who I am, I would be subjected to a relentless barrage of abuse and character assassination," the former minister wrote.
    "It now seems clear people in the Conservative and Labour Parties have been working with the Israeli embassy which has used them to demonise and trash MPs who criticise Israel; an army of Israel's useless idiots in Parliament. This is politically corrupt, and diplomatically indefensible," the former minister wrote, concluding that: "We need a full inquiry into the Israeli Embassy, the links, access and funding ... and an undertaking from all political parties that they welcome the financial and political support of the UK Jewish community, but won't accept any engagement linked to Israel until it stops building illegally on Palestinian land."
    The tapes also expose how the Israeli embassy has helped to establish, and in some cases has directly funded, a number of organisations that claim to be independent of it. This includes the Union of Jewish Students and a group for aspiring diplomats called Young Diplomatic London, to which Masot was on the executive committee
    Strizzolo said that "pretty much" all Tory MPs belonged to the CFI, including Theresa May, Chancellor of the Exchequer Philip Hammond and Boris Johnson.
    She also claimed credit for a question asked by Halfon at the time of the kidnap and suspected murder by Hamas of three Israeli settler youths in the West Bank in June 2014.
    The incident contributed to tensions which led to Israel's assault on Gaza the following month in which more than 2,000 Palestinians died, according to United Nations figures.
    Strizzolo, who was in Israel with the CFI at the time, said: "And I was on the phone with Rob [Halfon] to convince him to table a question for Prime Minister's Question Time, paying tribute ..."
    The reporter interrupted: "Did he do it?"
    Strizzolo continued: "Yeah. And also tabled in an urgent question to ... get a statement from the government on the three kids."
    'Hamas is Hamas is Hamas': How UK minister spoke up for Israel
    Halfon spoke about the incident in parliament on 2 July 2014, putting the following question to then-prime minister David Cameron: "The world has seen the tragic and brutal murders of three Israeli youngsters, most probably by Hamas.
    "Will my right honourable friend give the Israeli government every possible support at this time? Does he agree that, far from showing restraint, Israel must do everything possible to take out Hamas terrorist networks, and will he give the Israeli government support in that?"
    Cameron replied that he knew Halfon to be "passionate about these issues," but said that security operations needed to be conducted with care to avoid further escalation.
    "It is very important that Britain will stand with Israel as it seeks to bring to justice those who are responsible. The people responsible for this should be found and brought to justice," he said.
    Strizzolo also revealed she "prepared everything" for MPs so it was hard for them to say no.
    "So you literally prepare everything for them, it's harder from them to say: 'Oh no, I don’t have the time, you know.' So if they already have the questions to table for PMQs, it’s harder to say, 'Oh no, no, no, I won’t do it.'"
    Halfon had not responded to requests for comment at the time of publication.
    Masot, a former major in the Israeli navy, described his position at the embassy as a "political posting" and explained that he was not a "career diplomat".
    He said he worked for the Ministry of Strategic Affairs, which was set up by Netanyahu to conduct what has been described in Israel as a secret war against the BDS movement.
    Israeli ambassador Mark Regev speaking at an event at the Labour party conference in 2016 (Al Jazeera)
    Masot said Mark Regev, the current Israeli ambassador to the UK, was a friend, though in a revealing episode he hinted that he considered him too dovish.
    "Mark Regev, he's all the time asking me, yeah he's a good friend," he said.
    "Yeah, but that's the thing with Netanyahu usually the people that surround him are really nice, they are comfortable, they are comfortable people. Mark is a great person but he's not the guy that will go for a war."
    In a statement, Strizzolo said her conversation with Masot had been "tongue in cheek and gossipy" and had taken place "in a social context".
    "Any suggestion that I, as a civil servant working in education, could ever exert the type of influence you are suggesting is risible," she added.
    http://www.middleeasteye.net/news/re...arty-662911554
    "I think it would be a good idea." Mahatma Gandhi, when asked what he thought of Western civilization.

    The philosophers have only interpreted the world, in various ways; the point is to change it.
    Karl Marx.

    "Well, he would, wouldn't he?" Mandy Rice-Davies, 1963, replied Ms Rice Davies when the prosecuting counsel pointed out that Lord Astor denied an affair or having even met her.

  2. #2

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    Shai Masot, the Israeli Machiavelli caught in the act

    #IsraelLobby


    Shai Masot eased into his role as 'political officer' at the Israeli embassy in London. But his Machiavellian ways were his undoing




    Shai Masot (screengrab)



    Graeme Baker


    Sunday 8 January 2017 11:56 UTC


    Last update:
    Sunday 8 January 2017 21:27 UTC



    Topics:
    IsraelLobby



    Tags:
    Shai Masot, Mark Regev, Alan Duncan, Israel, UK



    Show comments



    Shai Masot once described himself as a man with "open views" who was committed to doing good in the world. Then he described Niccolo Machiavelli, a man infamous for promoting cunning and duplicity in statecraft, as his "god".
    It is perhaps a telling contradiction that defines the now former "political officer" at Israel's embassy in London. Masot caused outrage after tapes were released on Saturday showing him plotting to "take down" Alan Duncan, a British MP and a vocal opponent of illegal Israeli settlement building in the West Bank.
    Only, there is a telling difference between Masot and his "god": Machiavelli was never caught in the act. For his sins, Masot will soon be leaving the UK and while the British government considers the matter "closed", the days ahead promise to reveal more details of his dealings inside the British political establishment.
    REVEALED: Israeli diplomat caught on camera plotting to 'take down' UK MPs

    In its statement condemning Masot's actions, the Israeli embassy attempted to pass him off as a junior staffer. Masot revealed details of his biography in the recorded conversations, and it is clear from this he is no lowly embassy intern.
    Apparent damage limitation efforts have seen much of his online presence removed - his Twitter profile is no longer public, no Facebook page appears to exist - but one glimpse into his mind comes from a "couch-surfing" profile he published in 2013 which was public until it too was removed on Saturday.
    "About me: Interested in international relations and politics, working in the field for the last 10 years and intend to continue developing in that section [in] the future. I am spontaneous, philosophical, open views and appreciate good people and aim to do good in the world.
    "Philosophy: We all do better when we work together. Our differences do matter, but our common humanity matters more.
    "Books: Niccolo Machiavelli is my God!"

    What is known is that Masot served in the navy for eight years, rising to the rank of major. In 2013, he was photographed for the website of COGAT, a subordinate office of the Israeli defence ministry charged with "implementing the government's policy in Judea and Samaria [the West Bank] and vis-a-vis the Gaza Strip".
    Masot was pictured showing African dignitaries around the Gaza perimeter fence, wearing the insignia of an Israeli navy captain, or "seren".
    Shai Masot pictured on the Cogat webiste in 2013 (COGAT)
    In comments made in the undercover recordings, Masot says he gained a masters degree in international relations, and then worked for the defence ministry in Israel for two years.
    Some time after his promotion to major, Masot moved into diplomacy, apparently relocating to London after creating his 'couch surfing' profile. He is on record as working for the Ministry of Strategic Affairs, the core of Netanyahu’s effort to fight the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions movement, which Netanyahu identified as an existential threat to the state.
    "The position that they suggested to me to do is to be the liaison for the international communities around the world," he said of his role for the new ministry.
    Despite being on record on the leaked tapes as saying he was not a "career diplomat", Masot soon ingratiated himself into senior circles in all of the major British political parties.
    He attended various meetings, including talks as a "diplomat" and "political officer" in November 2015 with members of the Conservative Muslim Forum. Also present was Eitan Naeh, the charge d'affaires of the Israeli embassy at the time who was working in the stead of a soon-to-be appointed new ambassador.
    Masot was pictured with members of the Liberal Democrat Friends of Israel during the same month.
    In July of last year, after the appointment of Mark Regev to the top job at the embassy, Masot was featured in pictures of another meeting at the Conservative Muslim Forum, this time as "senior political officer".
    He was also pictured with Regev at a meeting at the Labour Party conference last year.
    Masot and Regev during the 2016 Labour party conference (screengrab)
    But it is his relationship with Maria Strizzolo, a former parliamentary assistant to the conservative MP Robert Halfon, and their conversation about "taking down" British MPs, that proved his undoing.
    In the most damning section of leaked tapes of their conversation in October last year, Masot asks: "Can I give you some MPs that you can take down?"
    "Well you know, if you look hard enough I’m sure that there is something they are trying to hide."
    Masot said: "Yeah, I have some MPs."
    Strizzolo said: "Let’s talk about it."
    Masot: "The deputy foreign minister." [This is a reference to Alan Duncan]
    "You still want to go for it?"
    Masot’s reply is ambiguous but he said Duncan was "causing problems". Strizzolo asks: "I thought we had, you know, neutralised him just a little bit, no?" Masot answered: "No."
    Downfall

    The result is the abrupt end of Masot the non-diplomat diplomat, and his former supporters - and friends - running for cover.
    Strizzolo told the Guardian: "Shai Masot is someone I know purely socially and as a friend. He is not someone with whom I have ever worked or had any political dealings beyond chatting about politics, as millions of people do, in a social context."
    She later resigned from civil servant position at Britain's education ministry - a job she only recently started.
    Regev and the Israeli embassy also distanced themselves from Masot. He was not a "political officer", as he and others described him - he was now a "junior member" of staff.
    "The comments were made by a junior embassy employee who is not an Israeli diplomat," said an embassy statement on Saturday. Masot, it said "will be ending his term of employment with the embassy shortly".
    A statement that appears to be contradicted by the evidence at hand.
    In the tapes, Masot himself boasts of his friendship with Regev, but true to Machiavellian type, damns him with faint praise.
    "Mark Regev... yeah he’s a good friend," he says in the tape. "Yeah, but ... Mark is a great person but he’s not the guy that will go for a war."
    Masot's should perhaps heed the words of his "god" Machiavelli, as stated in his seminal work The Prince: "Friendships that are won by awards, and not by greatness and nobility of soul, although deserved, yet are not real, and cannot be depended upon in time of adversity."
    This article is available in French on Middle East Eye French edition.
    http://www.middleeasteye.net/news/sh...act-1773497233
    "I think it would be a good idea." Mahatma Gandhi, when asked what he thought of Western civilization.

    The philosophers have only interpreted the world, in various ways; the point is to change it.
    Karl Marx.

    "Well, he would, wouldn't he?" Mandy Rice-Davies, 1963, replied Ms Rice Davies when the prosecuting counsel pointed out that Lord Astor denied an affair or having even met her.

  3. #3

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    REVEALED: How Israeli diplomat worked inside Labour to undermine 'crazy' Corbyn

    #IsraelLobby


    Secret tapes expose how embassy political officer sought to launch youth group amid concerns about waning Israeli influence within UK opposition




    Masot described supporters of Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn (pictured) as "weirdos" and "extremists" (AFP)



    Alex MacDonald


    Simon Hooper
    Sunday 8 January 2017 22:35 UTC


    Last update:
    Sunday 8 January 2017 23:46 UTC



    Topics:
    IsraelLobby



    Tags:
    Israeli Embassy, Labour Party, Jeremy Corbyn, Shai Masot



    Show comments



    Undercover recordings seen by Middle East Eye have revealed how an Israeli diplomat sought to establish organisations and youth groups to promote Israeli influence inside the opposition Labour party in an effort to undermine Jeremy Corbyn's leadership.
    In secret conversations filmed by an undercover reporter, Shai Masot, a senior political officer at the Israeli embassy in London, described his plans to set up a youth wing of the Labour Friends of Israel (LFI) organisation and revealed that he had set up other organisations in the past.
    Masot described taking delegations of Labour members on trips to Israel and told Joan Ryan, the chair of LFI, that he had he had been approved £1m ($1.2m) to fund further visits.
    He also said he had set up a group called “The City Friends of Israel” in collaboration with AIPAC, an influential pro-Israel lobbying organisation in the US.
    Describing Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn as “crazy”, Masot said he had set up a youth wing of the Conservative Friends of Israel in 2015 and wanted to do the same inside the Labour Party, but had been unsuccessful because of the “crisis” surrounding Corbyn's election as leader.
    Masot also described Corbyn's supporters as being "weirdos" and "extremists".
    Corbyn is considered supportive of the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) movement, which Masot elsewhere in the recordings said he had been tasked with discrediting and undermining.
    Shai Masot, the Israeli Machiavelli caught in the act

    Corbyn's tenure in power has seen the party’s fortunes slide in the polls, and he has also presided over a row within the party over the alleged presence - and toleration - of anti-Semitic views among members.
    The conversations were covertly filmed by an undercover Al Jazeera reporter posing as a pro-Israel Labour activist who gained Masot's trust and infiltrated his circle so effectively that he was himself tasked with the job of establishing Young Labour Friends of Israel.
    In a subsequent conversation, Masot stressed that the organisation should remain independent, but reiterated that the Israeli embassy could help.
    Asked whether he had set up other groups in the UK, he said: “Nothing I can share, but yeah.”
    He then said: “Yeah, because there are things that, you know, happen, but it’s good to leave those organisations independent. But we help them, actually.”
    Shai Masot was secretly filmed over a number of months (Al Jazeera)

    The undercover reporter also caught pro-Israel Labour activists on film describing financial support that they had received from the Israeli embassy.
    In one conversation filmed outside a London pub, Michael Rubin, the parliamentary officer for LFI and a former leader of Labour Students, said: “Shai spoke to me and said the Israeli embassy will be able to get a bit of money as well, which is good... he said he’s happy to sort of help fund a couple of events so it makes it easier, so I don’t think money should be a problem really.”
    Rubin also said that he and Masot “work really closely together... but a lot of it is behind the scenes”.
    UK government pressed to investigate plan to 'take down' minister

    The latest revelations come as the UK government on Sunday faced mounting calls for an inquiry into the activities of Masot, a senior political officer based in Israel's embassy in London who was secretly filmed plotting to “take down” government ministers and MPs considered to be causing “problems” for Israel.
    They included Alan Duncan, a foreign office minister who has been one of the most vocal critics of Israel's illegal West Bank settlement programme, and Crispin Blunt, the influential chairman of the parliamentary foreign affairs select committee.
    The tapes also exposed the extent of Israeli influence within the ruling Conservative Party, with one assistant to Robert Halfon, a junior education minister, boasting about how she had planted parliamentary questions, and describing how “pretty much” every Conservative MP was a member of the Conservative Friends of Israel.
    REVEALED: Secret tapes expose Israeli influence over UK Conservative Party

    Masot complained that the Labour Party under Corbyn, who in a meeting with activists in 2009 referred to the Palestinian group Hamas and the Lebanese militia Hezbollah as “friends”, had proved harder to influence, despite its historic links with Israel.
    “Not a lot of people want to be affiliated,” says Masot in the video recording. “Obviously when they become MPs they won’t be affiliated and then that’s it, the chain is done. Because for years, every MP that joined the parliament, the first thing that he used to do is go to join the LFI.”
    In footage filmed at last September's Labour conference in Liverpool, Masot is seen discussing plans with Joan Ryan, the MP for Enfield North in London, for a forthcoming visit by LFU members to Israel.
    “What happened with the names that we put into the Embassy, Shai?” Ryan inquired.
    “Just now we’ve got the money, it’s more than one million pounds, it’s a lot of money,” Masot replied.
    “I know, it must be,” said Ryan.
    “And now I’ve got the money so from Israel so… it’s not physical, it’s an approval,” Masot continued to explain.
    “I didn’t think you had it in your bag!” joked Ryan.
    OBORNE: Is May's government complicit in Israeli interference in UK politics?

    The exchange prompted a call from Hugo Swires, a Conservative MP who chairs the Conservative Middle East Council, for the Friends of Israel organisations linked to all of the UK's main parties to disclose their funding arrangements.
    “There are serious questions to be asked,” Swires told MEE. “This raises a whole lot of issues on a whole lot of different levels. The Conservative Middle East Council is a properly affiliated organisation within the Conservative Party. Therefore we have to fall within the parameters of corporate donations and individual donations as does the party itself.
    “If you compare that to the CFI, the LFI, the Liberal Democrat Friends of Israel, we’ve always thought that’s been shrouded in mystery - as they’re not officially accredited to their respective parties. I do think the time has come for these organisations to come out public and reveal how they are funded and where they are funded from.”
    Labour on Sunday called for a full investigation into Masot's activities, after the government on Saturday said it considered the matter closed following an apology to Duncan from Mark Regev, the Israeli ambassador.
    Emily Thornberry, Labour's shadow foreign minister, said: “The exposure of an Israeli embassy official discussing how to bring down or discredit a government minister and other MPs because of their views on the Middle East is extremely disturbing.
    “Improper interference in our democratic politics by other states is unacceptable whichever country is involved. It is simply not good enough for the Foreign Office to say the matter is closed. This is a national security issue.
    “The embassy official involved should be withdrawn, and the government should launch an immediate inquiry into the extent of this improper interference and demand from the Israeli government that it be brought to an end.”























    Labour has been backed in its call for an inquiry by the Scottish Nationalist Party and several senior Conservative MPs.
    Crispin Blunt told MEE: "What we cannot have is Israel acting in the UK with the same impunity it enjoys in Palestine.
    "This is clearly interference in another country's politics of the murkiest and most discreditable kind."
    Nicholas Soames, another Conservative MP, told MEE's Peter Oborne: “This ranks as the equivalent of Soviet intelligence in what they are doing to suborn democracy and interfere in due process.”
    Writing anonymously in the Mail on Sunday newspaper, a former minister in former prime minister David Cameron's government, said that British foreign policy was “in hock to Israeli influence at the heart of our politics.
    “For years the CFI and LFI have worked with – even for – the Israeli embassy to promote Israeli policy and thwart UK government policy and the actions of ministers who try to defend Palestinian rights.”

    The Israeli embassy has sought to play down Masot's seniority describing him as a “junior embassy employee” whose remarks had been “completely unacceptable”.
    It said he would be “ending his term of employment at the embassy very shortly”.

    http://www.middleeasteye.net/news/is...byn-1016879568
    "I think it would be a good idea." Mahatma Gandhi, when asked what he thought of Western civilization.

    The philosophers have only interpreted the world, in various ways; the point is to change it.
    Karl Marx.

    "Well, he would, wouldn't he?" Mandy Rice-Davies, 1963, replied Ms Rice Davies when the prosecuting counsel pointed out that Lord Astor denied an affair or having even met her.

  4. #4

    Default Why Has Israeli Spy Shai Masot Not Been Expelled?

    There is no starker proof of the golden chains in which Israel has entangled the British political class, than the incredible fact that “diplomat” Shai Masot has not been expelled for secretly conspiring to influence British politics by attacking Britain’s Deputy Foreign Minister, suggesting that he might be brought down by “a little scandal”. It is incredible by any normal standards of diplomatic behaviour that immediate action was not taken against Masot for actions which when revealed any professional diplomat would normally expect to result in being “PNG’d” – declared persona non grata.
    Obama has just expelled 35 Russian diplomats for precisely the same offence, with the exception that in the Russian case there is absolutely zero hard evidence, whereas in the Masot case there is irrefutable evidence on which to act.

    To compare the two cases is telling. Al Jazeera should be congratulated on their investigation, which shames the British corporate and state media who would never have carried out such actual journalism. By contrast, the British media has parroted without the slightest scrutiny the truly pathetic Obama camp claims of Russian interference, evidently without reading them. When I was sent the latest “intelligence report” on Russian hacking a couple of evenings ago, I quite genuinely for several minutes thought it was a spoof by the Daily Mash or similar, parodying the kind of ludicrous claims that kept being advanced with zero evidence. I do implore you to read it, as when you realise it is supposed to be serious it becomes still more hilarious.
    The existence of a natural preference in Russia to see a US President who does not want to start World War III is quoted as itself evidence that Russia interfered, just as the fact that I could do with some more money is evidence I robbed a bank. The fact that Russia did not criticise the electoral process after the result is somehow evidence that Putin personally ordered electoral hacking. Oh, and the fact that Russia Today once hosted a programme critical of fracking is evidence of a Russian plot to destroy the US economy. Please do read it, I promise you will be laughing for weeks.
    In passing, allow me to destroy quickly the “we have smoking gun evidence but it’s too secret to show you” argument. Given the Snowden revelations and the whistleblowing of the former NSA Technical Director Bill Binney, for the US government to claim to be hiding the fact that it can tack all electronic traffic in the USA is risible. This is like saying we can’t give you the evidence in case the Russians find out the sky is blue. If there were hacks, the NSA could identify the precise hack transmitting the precise information out of Washington. Everybody knows that. There were no hacks so there is no evidence. End of argument. They are internal leaks.
    The two stories – Russian interference in US politics, Israeli interference in UK politics – also link because the New York Times claims that it was the British that first suggested to the Obama administration that Russian cyber activity was targeting Clinton. Director of Cyber Security and Information Assurance in the British Cabinet Office is Matthew Gould, the UK’s former openly and strongly pro-Zionist Ambassador to Israel and friend of the current Israeli Ambassador Mark Regev. While Private Secretary to David Miliband and William Hague, and then while Ambassador to Israel, Regev held eight secret meetings with Adam Werritty, on at least one occasion with Mossad present and on most occasions also with now minister Liam Fox. My Freedom of Information requests for minutes of these meetings brought the reply that they were not minuted, and my Freedom of Information request for the diary entries for these meetings brought me three pages each containing only the date, with everything else redacted.
    I managed to get the information about the Gould/Werritty meetings as a result of relentless questioning, where I was kindly assisted by MPs including Jeremy Corbyn, Caroline Lucas and Paul Flynn. The woman with whom Shai Masot was conniving to undermine Alan Duncan, was Maria Strizzolo, who works for Tory Minister Robert Halfon. It was Halfon who repeatedly tried to obstruct Paul Flynn MP from asking questions of Cabinet Secretary Gus O’Donnell that threatened to get to the heart of the real Adam Werritty scandal.
    Both Robert Halfon and Adam Werrity received funding from precisely the same Israeli sources, and in particular from Mr Poju Zabludowicz. Halfon also formerly had a full time paid job as Political Director of the Conservative Friends of Israel. Halfon’s assistant is now caught conspiring with the Israeli Embassy to attack another Tory minister.
    House of Commons Publc Admininstration Committee 24/11/2011
    Q Paul Flynn: Okay. Matthew Gould has been the subject of a very serious complaint from two of my constituents, Pippa Bartolotti and Joyce Giblin. When they were briefly imprisoned in Israel, they met the ambassador, and they strongly believe—it is nothing to do with this case at all—that he was serving the interest of the Israeli Government, and not the interests of two British citizens. This has been the subject of correspondence.
    In your report, you suggest that there were two meetings between the ambassador and Werritty and Liam Fox. Questions and letters have proved that, in fact, six such meetings took place. There are a number of issues around this. I do not normally fall for conspiracy theories, but the ambassador has proclaimed himself to be a Zionist and he has previously served in Iran, in the service. Werritty is a self-proclaimed—
    Robert Halfon: Point of order, Chairman. What is the point of this?
    Paul Flynn:> Let me get to it. Werritty is a self-proclaimed expert on Iran.
    Chair:> I have to take a point of order.
    Robert Halfon:> Mr Flynn is implying that the British ambassador to Israel is working for a foreign power, which is out of order.
    Paul Flynn:> I quote the Daily Mail: “Mr Werritty is a self-proclaimed expert on Iran and has made several visits. He has also met senior Israeli officials, leading to accusations”—not from me, from the Daily Mail—“that he was close to the country’s secret service, Mossad.” There may be nothing in that, but that appeared in a national newspaper.
    Chair:> I am going to rule on a point of order. Mr Flynn has made it clear that there may be nothing in these allegations, but it is important to have put it on the record. Be careful how you phrase questions.
    Paul Flynn:> Indeed. The two worst decisions taken by Parliament in my 25 years were the invasion of Iraq—joining Bush’s war in Iraq—and the invasion of Helmand province. We know now that there were things going on in the background while that built up to these mistakes. The charge in this case is that Werritty was the servant of neo-con people in America, who take an aggressive view on Iran. They want to foment a war in Iran in the same way as in the early years, there was another—
    Chair:> Order. I must ask you to move to a question that is relevant to the inquiry.
    Q Paul Flynn:> Okay. The question is, are you satisfied that you missed out on the extra four meetings that took place, and does this not mean that those meetings should have been investigated because of the nature of Mr Werritty’s interests?
    Sir Gus O’Donnell:> I think if you look at some of those meetings, some people are referring to meetings that took place before the election.
    Q Paul Flynn:> Indeed, which is even more worrying.
    Sir Gus O’Donnell:> I am afraid they were not the subject—what members of the Opposition do is not something that the Cabinet Secretary should look into. It is not relevant.
    But these meetings were held—
    Chair:> Mr Flynn, would you let him answer please?
    Sir Gus O’Donnell:> I really do not think that was within my context, because they were not Ministers of the Government and what they were up to was not something I should get into at all.
    Chair:> Final question, Mr Flynn.
    Q Paul Flynn:> No, it is not a final question. I am not going to be silenced by you, Chairman; I have important things to raise. I have stayed silent throughout this meeting so far.
    You state in the report—on the meeting held between Gould, Fox and Werritty, on 6 February, in Tel Aviv—that there was a general discussion of international affairs over a private dinner with senior Israelis. The UK ambassador was present. Are you following the line taken by the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government who says that he can eat with lobbyists or people applying to his Department because, on occasions, he eats privately, and on other occasions he eats ministerially? Are you accepting the idea? It is possibly a source of great national interest—the eating habits of their Secretary of State. It appears that he might well have a number of stomachs, it has been suggested, if he can divide his time this way. It does seem to be a way of getting round the ministerial code, if people can announce that what they are doing is private rather than ministerial.
    Sir Gus O’Donnell:> The important point here was that, when the Secretary of State had that meeting, he had an official with him—namely, in this case, the ambassador. That is very important, and I should stress that I would expect our ambassador in Israel to have contact with Mossad. That will be part of his job. It is totally natural, and I do not think that you should infer anything from that about the individual’s biases. That is what ambassadors do. Our ambassador in Pakistan will have exactly the same set of wide contacts.
    Q Paul Flynn:> I have good reason, as I said, from constituency matters, to be unhappy about the ambassador. Other criticisms have been made about the ambassador; he is unique in some ways in the role he is performing. There have been suggestions that he is too close to a foreign power.
    Robert Halfon:> On a point of order, Chair, this is not about the ambassador to Israel. This is supposed to be about the Werritty affair.
    Paul Flynn:> It is absolutely crucial to this report. If neo-cons such as yourself, Robert, are plotting a war in Iran, we should know about it.
    Chair:> Order. I think the line of questioning is very involved. I have given you quite a lot of time, Mr Flynn. If you have further inquiries to make of this, they could be pursued in correspondence. May I ask you to ask one final question before we move on?
    Sir Gus O’Donnell:> One thing I would stress: we are talking about the ambassador and I think he has a right of reply. Mr Chairman, I know there is an interesting question of words regarding Head of the Civil Service versus Head of the Home Civil Service, but this is the Diplomatic Service, not the Civil Service.
    Q Chair:> So he is not in your jurisdiction at all.
    Sir Gus O’Donnell:> No.
    Q Paul Flynn:> But you are happy that your report is final; it does not need to go the manager it would have gone to originally, and that is the end of the affair. Is that your view?
    Sir Gus O’Donnell:> As I said, some issues arose where I wanted to be sure that what the Secretary of State was doing had been discussed with the Foreign Secretary. I felt reassured by what the Foreign Secretary told me.
    Q Chair:> I think what Mr Flynn is asking is that your report and the affair raise other issues, but you are saying that that does not fall within the remit of your report and that, indeed, the conduct of an ambassador does not fall within your remit at all.
    Sir Gus O’Donnell:> That is absolutely correct.
    Paul Flynn:> The charge laid by Lord Turnbull in his evidence with regard to Dr Fox and the ministerial code was his failure to observe collective responsibility, in that case about Sri Lanka. Isn’t the same charge there about our policies to Iran and Israel?
    Chair:> We have dealt with that, Mr Flynn.
    Paul Flynn:> We haven’t dealt with it as far as it applies—
    Chair:> Mr Flynn, we are moving on.
    Paul Flynn:> You may well move on, but I remain very unhappy about the fact that you will not allow me to finish the questioning I wanted to give on a matter of great importance.
    It is shocking but true that Robert Halfon MP, who disrupted Flynn with repeated points of order, receives funding from precisely the same Israeli sources as Werritty, and in particular from Mr Poju Zabludowicz. He also formerly had a full time paid job as Political Director of the Conservative Friends of Israel. It is not surprising that Shai Masot evidently views Halfon as a useful tool for attacking senior pro-Palestinian members of his own party.
    But despite the evasiveness of O’Donnell and the obstruction of paid zionist puppet Halfon, O’Donnell confirmed vital parts of my investigation. In particular he agreed that the Fox-Werritty-Gould “private dinner” in Tel Aviv was with Mossad, and that Gould met Werritty many times more than the twice that O’Donnell listed in his “investigation” into the Werritty affair. The truth of the Werritty scandal, hidden comprehensively by the mainstream media, was that Werritty was inside the UK Ministry of Defence working for Israel. That is why it was so serious that Defence Minister Liam Fox had to resign
    Of the eight meetings of Fox-Gould-Werritty together which I discovered, seven were while Fox was Secretary of State for Defence. Only one was while Fox was in opposition. But O’Donnell let the cat much further out of the bag, with the astonishing admission to Paul Flynn’s above questioning that Gould, Fox and Werritty held “meetings that took place before the election.” He also referred to “some of those meetings” as being before the election. Both are plainly in the plural.
    It is evident from the information gained by Paul Flynn that not only did Fox, Gould and Werritty have at least seven meetings while Fox was in power – with no minutes and never another British official present – they had several meetings while Fox was shadow Foreign Secretary. O’Donnell was right that what Fox and Werritty were up to in opposition was not his concern. But what Gould was doing with them – a senior official – most definitely was his concern. A senior British diplomat cannot just hold a series of meetings with the opposition shadow Defence Secretary and a paid Israeli lobbyist.
    All of this underlined the pernicious influence that Israel has in the political class, which is founded on the Israeli lobby’s shameless use of cash for influence – as witnessed in the discussion between Shai Masot and Labour Firends of Israel and his flaunting of a million. Attitudes towards the plight of the Palestinians are an extreme example of the disconnect between public opinion and the views of the political class, and Al Jazeera should be congratulated heartily on giving us a peek into that.
    No further evidence is required. There could be no more conclusive evidence of Israel’s undue and pernicious influence than the astonishing fact that Shai Masot has not yet been expelled.
    https://www.craigmurray.org.uk/
    "I think it would be a good idea." Mahatma Gandhi, when asked what he thought of Western civilization.

    The philosophers have only interpreted the world, in various ways; the point is to change it.
    Karl Marx.

    "Well, he would, wouldn't he?" Mandy Rice-Davies, 1963, replied Ms Rice Davies when the prosecuting counsel pointed out that Lord Astor denied an affair or having even met her.

  5. Default

    I really wouldn't be surprised if the Israelis hacked the DNC and fed it to Wikileaks, and left fingerprints behind to make it appear that the Russians did it. They are the only other powerful country that will obviously benefit from Trump's presidency.

  6. #6

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Tracy Riddle View Post
    I really wouldn't be surprised if the Israelis hacked the DNC and fed it to Wikileaks, and left fingerprints behind to make it appear that the Russians did it. They are the only other powerful country that will obviously benefit from Trump's presidency.
    The same thought had occurred to me too Tracy, but Assange has stated emphatically it was not a state actor. Craig Murray and others are also explicit that it was a leak and not a hack. I continue to suspect that Seth Rich was responsible for at least one such hack (there appear to have been two altogether) given that Wikileaks has offered $20,000 for information leading to the arrest and conviction of those responsible for his murder.
    The shadow is a moral problem that challenges the whole ego-personality, for no one can become conscious of the shadow without considerable moral effort. To become conscious of it involves recognizing the dark aspects of the personality as present and real. This act is the essential condition for any kind of self-knowledge.
    Carl Jung - Aion (1951). CW 9, Part II: P.14

  7. #7

    Default The role of MI5

    I was going to ask where MI5 has been while these Israeli agents were - and very obviously remain - subverting British democracy.

    Then I recalled the carte blanch afforded BOSS in Britain by MI5 in the 1960s and 1970s, and concluded that I am looking at a repeat, with a second apartheid state's intelligence services being allowed to run free - because it has suited MI5's agenda.

    I wonder when Craig Murray will turn to pondering MI5's role:


    Britain’s Most Undesirable Immigrant: Why Was Shai Masot Given a Visa?

    Craig Murray

    10 January 2017

    https://www.craigmurray.org.uk/archi...ot-given-visa/

    Astonishingly, the Israeli Embassy’s Senior Political Officer Shai Masot, implicated in a plot against the Deputy Foreign Minister, was not on the Foreign and Commonwealth Office’s Diplomatic List, the Bible for the status of accredited diplomats. This opens up a number of extremely important questions. Who was he, what was his visa status and why was he resident in the UK? It is very plain that the work he was doing as “Senior Political Officer” would equate normally to senior diplomatic rank.

    He was a major in the Israeli Navy – in the FCO’s own table of equivalent rank, Major equates to Second Secretary in the Diplomatic Service. After that he went on to apparently executive positions in the Ministry for Strategic Affairs, before moving to the Israeli Embassy in London. There he held many recorded meetings with politicians, including giving briefings in parliament and at party conferences, and acted in a way that in general would accord with a rank around First Secretary to Counsellor.

    So why exactly has he never featured in the FCO’s Diplomatic List? He very plainly outranks many of those Israeli diplomats who are featured. It should be noted it is perfectly normal for diplomats not to come from a country’s foreign affairs ministry. For one example Ivan Rogers who spectacularly resigned recently as Britain’s Ambassador to the EU, was from the Treasury not the FCO. Several people in the Israeli Embassy, who are on the Diplomatic List, are not from the foreign service. So that is not the reason.

    This is not an obscure point. As a former diplomat, my first instinct was to look him up on the Diplomatic List. Every country in the world controls the number of permitted foreign diplomats very closely, for two reasons. Firstly it confers an immigration residency status, and secondly it confers tax exemption and an immunity from prosecution. The Diplomatic List is therefore not a loose thing – there is an entire section of good employees in the FCO tasked with policing it in close liaison with the Home Office.

    Embassies are allowed a very small number of technical and support staff – IT people and cleaners – in addition. But these must be what they say they are. Plainly Masot was not in reality one of these, and plainly the official Israeli Embassy explanation that he was a “junior member of staff” is a lie. The Israeli Embassy is not given visas for “junior members of staff” except in very specific job categories which Masot plainly does not meet.

    It is a lie in which the FCO must have been absolutely complicit in organising his immigration residency status in the UK.

    I have contacted the media office of the FCO to query Masot’s immigration status, and so far received no reply. But the key questions are these:

    Why is the British Government granting Israeli intelligence operatives false residency immigration status in the UK based on a deliberate lie about their role and position?
    How many other Israeli intelligence officers are active in the UK with a false immigration status?
    Who, specifically, authorised Masot’s visa, and why?

    My advantage as an ex-British Ambassador is that I know the bureaucratically correct questions to ask to get to the heart of a matter. Please do ask them of your MP, and get them to demand answers from the FCO.
    "There are three sorts of conspiracy: by the people who complain, by the people who write, by the people who take action. There is nothing to fear from the first group, the two others are more dangerous; but the police have to be part of all three,"

    Joseph Fouche

  8. #8

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Paul Rigby View Post
    I was going to ask where MI5 has been while these Israeli agents were - and very obviously remain - subverting British democracy.

    Then I recalled the carte blanch afforded BOSS in Britain by MI5 in the 1960s and 1970s, and concluded that I am looking at a repeat, with a second apartheid state's intelligence services being allowed to run free - because it has suited MI5's agenda.

    I wonder when Craig Murray will turn to pondering MI5's role:


    Britain’s Most Undesirable Immigrant: Why Was Shai Masot Given a Visa?

    Craig Murray

    10 January 2017

    https://www.craigmurray.org.uk/archi...ot-given-visa/

    Astonishingly, the Israeli Embassy’s Senior Political Officer Shai Masot, implicated in a plot against the Deputy Foreign Minister, was not on the Foreign and Commonwealth Office’s Diplomatic List, the Bible for the status of accredited diplomats. This opens up a number of extremely important questions. Who was he, what was his visa status and why was he resident in the UK? It is very plain that the work he was doing as “Senior Political Officer” would equate normally to senior diplomatic rank.

    He was a major in the Israeli Navy – in the FCO’s own table of equivalent rank, Major equates to Second Secretary in the Diplomatic Service. After that he went on to apparently executive positions in the Ministry for Strategic Affairs, before moving to the Israeli Embassy in London. There he held many recorded meetings with politicians, including giving briefings in parliament and at party conferences, and acted in a way that in general would accord with a rank around First Secretary to Counsellor.

    So why exactly has he never featured in the FCO’s Diplomatic List? He very plainly outranks many of those Israeli diplomats who are featured. It should be noted it is perfectly normal for diplomats not to come from a country’s foreign affairs ministry. For one example Ivan Rogers who spectacularly resigned recently as Britain’s Ambassador to the EU, was from the Treasury not the FCO. Several people in the Israeli Embassy, who are on the Diplomatic List, are not from the foreign service. So that is not the reason.

    This is not an obscure point. As a former diplomat, my first instinct was to look him up on the Diplomatic List. Every country in the world controls the number of permitted foreign diplomats very closely, for two reasons. Firstly it confers an immigration residency status, and secondly it confers tax exemption and an immunity from prosecution. The Diplomatic List is therefore not a loose thing – there is an entire section of good employees in the FCO tasked with policing it in close liaison with the Home Office.

    Embassies are allowed a very small number of technical and support staff – IT people and cleaners – in addition. But these must be what they say they are. Plainly Masot was not in reality one of these, and plainly the official Israeli Embassy explanation that he was a “junior member of staff” is a lie. The Israeli Embassy is not given visas for “junior members of staff” except in very specific job categories which Masot plainly does not meet.

    It is a lie in which the FCO must have been absolutely complicit in organising his immigration residency status in the UK.

    I have contacted the media office of the FCO to query Masot’s immigration status, and so far received no reply. But the key questions are these:

    Why is the British Government granting Israeli intelligence operatives false residency immigration status in the UK based on a deliberate lie about their role and position?
    How many other Israeli intelligence officers are active in the UK with a false immigration status?
    Who, specifically, authorised Masot’s visa, and why?

    My advantage as an ex-British Ambassador is that I know the bureaucratically correct questions to ask to get to the heart of a matter. Please do ask them of your MP, and get them to demand answers from the FCO.
    I'm sure he won't get a reply to any of his three key questions, but the last one is the really key one. Who authorised his visa and why?

    I believe that Mossad and BOSS were very close too. Other than that isn't Israel one of the three stooges? The US, the UK and Israel were all working together on the Iran-Contra affair. Interestingly, after Israel counter-intelligence officer Amiram Nir was fingered by Oliver North and resigned from the Israeli government he set-up a security company in London --- before dying (in a mysterious plane crash - whispered to be a clean-up operation).
    The shadow is a moral problem that challenges the whole ego-personality, for no one can become conscious of the shadow without considerable moral effort. To become conscious of it involves recognizing the dark aspects of the personality as present and real. This act is the essential condition for any kind of self-knowledge.
    Carl Jung - Aion (1951). CW 9, Part II: P.14

  9. #9

    Default

    I'm sure he won't get a reply to any of his three key questions, but the last one is the really key one. Who authorised his visa and why?

    I believe that Mossad and BOSS were very close too. Other than that isn't Israel one of the three stooges? The US, the UK and Israel were all working together on the Iran-Contra affair. Interestingly, after Israel counter-intelligence officer Amiram Nir was fingered by Oliver North and resigned from the Israeli government he set-up a security company in London --- before dying (in a mysterious plane crash - whispered to be a clean-up operation).
    Clever, no? If he is not officially listed as an Israeli diplomat, even if he is working as one, then he can't easily be removed for behavior violating diplomatic protocol. I'm sure there are many such intelligence agents operating and known to be in the UK and US. Very few other countries' agents would be granted such latitude. And yes, BOSS and Mossad were very close, indeed - as was Israel and Apartheid South Africa - Israel even helped develop S.A.'s nuclear program and supplied training and weapons to keep the subjugated majority down. But then, the UK and US were watching and secretly approving of all that....and Iran/Contra...and dancing Israeli 'art students' before and during 911.
    If there is no struggle there is no progress. Power concedes nothing without a demand. It never did and it never will.” - Frederick Douglass
    "Let me issue and control a nation's money and I care not who writes the laws. - Mayer Rothschild
    "Civil disobedience is not our problem. Our problem is civil obedience! People are obedient in the face of poverty, starvation, stupidity, war, and cruelty. Our problem is that grand thieves are running the country. That's our problem!" - Howard Zinn

  10. #10

    Default Al Jazeera Investigations - The Lobby

    Al Jazeera Investigations - The Lobby

    Published on Jan 10, 2017

    In the first of a four-part series, Al Jazeera goes undercover inside the Israel Lobby in Britain. We expose a campaign to infiltrate and influence youth groups, including the National Union of Students, whose president faces a smear campaign coordinated by her own deputy and supported by the Israel Embassy.

    "There are three sorts of conspiracy: by the people who complain, by the people who write, by the people who take action. There is nothing to fear from the first group, the two others are more dangerous; but the police have to be part of all three,"

    Joseph Fouche

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