This morning I got an e-mail titled "Remember this?" It was about Oliver North testifying in 1987 that Osama Bin Laden was evil and vicious.
What I remembered is that it never happened. The message, like too many other "news" items circulated by e-mail without provenance, was a hoax. Click here to find out more about the Oliver North Hoax.
A companion hoax states that Israelis had arrested 9-11 bomber Mohamed Atta in the 80's and released him in a prisoner exchange. It is true that Israel arrested a person named Mohammed Atta, but he was a different fellow.
Some other examples of fraud and deception:
A book written by a rabbi no less, claimed that Martin Luther King Jr. had written a letter, that stated that anti-Zionism is anti-Semitism, and that this letter had been published in the Saturday Review of August 1967 and in an anthology of King's work called This I believe.
There was never any such article in the Saturday Review nor was there any such book. King did indeed express those sentiments in an answer to a question at a talk he gave. However, the hoax discredited a noble sentiment.
During the height of the Intifada, a "letter from an anonymous Israeli" was circulated concerning terrorism. The letter was supposedly written in reaction to suicide bombings. In fact, the letter was written about 1987 by the late rabbi Meir Kahana and was part of his racist propaganda.
People who originate these hoaxes do not do so to help Zionism or Israel, but rather in service of their own psychopathological needs. In the Western world, educated audiences usually spot such hoaxes and they damage the credibility of the cause they supposedly represent. Others believe what they want to believe.
In other societies it may not be so. The claim that the Israeli Mossad intelligence service carried out the 9-11 attacks has gained quite a bit of credence in the Middle East. Likewise, the Palestinian hoax claiming that Israel was injecting Palestinians with AIDS virus, several rumors that Israel is building a synagogue under the Al-Aqsa mosque and the fabricated Jenin massacre of 2002 have all gained considerable credence -- even among Western supporters of the Palestinian cause. A repertoire of bloodthirsty quotes from Ariel Sharon and other Israelis circulates around the Internet and at Web sites. All are fabricated, including a non-existent interview with a non-existent general named "Ouze Merham" and another interview that was a piece of fiction written by Amoz Oz and attributed by fabricators to Ariel Sharon, One of the worst offenders in this regard is the Miftah Web site. Ironically, Miftah announced some time ago that it was cooperating with an Israeli group in monitoring 'incitement."
A most delicious hoax was perpetrated about 5 years ago. It was announced by sober and respectable newspapers that Israel had developed a genetically tuned bio-weapon, that could selectively kill Arabs and leave Jews unharmed. There is not the least bit of scientific support for the feasibility of this idea. It sounded like "Star Gate" technology and it was. It was the fruit of a science fiction contest run by an Israeli newspaper. Nonetheless, political scientists and journalists, blissfully ignorant of the genetic facts of life, insisted that it is true, and that anyone who claims differently is a Zionist propagandist in the pay of the Mossad.
People too often believe what they want to believe. Do not fall into that trap. Next time you get an e-mail message that is too good to be true, check the Web first to make certain it is not a hoax.
See also: Be Proud - presenting Zionism
and Zionist Quotes Real and fake
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Devid, Wednesday, April 12th
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