woensdag 1 oktober 2014

Ophef rond open brief Gaza in The Lancet


Niet alleen laaggeschoolde rappers en middelbare ambtenaren zijn bevattelijk voor wilde complottheorieën over de Joodse almacht en samenzwering, ook vermeende intellectuelen zoals medisch specialisten verliezen hun (naar men zou aannemen) kritische blik wel eens als ze zich buiten hun vakgebied begeven. Net als bij Gretta Duisenberg vraag ik me dan wel af: antisemiet (zoals hieronder gesteld) of gewoon ontzettend onnozel?


De medici die een aanklacht tegen de Gaza oorlog in The Lancet publiceerden zijn bepaald geen nieuwkomers:

Dr. Ang was naar eigen zeggen een fundamentalistisch christen die tot de eerste Libanon Oorlog Israel steunde. Ze was als vrijwilligster in Libanon ooggetuige van de slachting in Sabra en Shatilla. Ze getuigde voor de Kahan commissie en schreef er een boek over.

Dr. Manduca, een Italiaans professor in genetica, steunde 5 jaar geleden al een petitie om Hamas van de EU-lijst van terroristische organisaties te laten schrappen. Ook de open brief in The Lancet bevat geen letter kritiek op Hamas. Manduca en Ang wordt verweten antisemitische complotfantasieën te verspreiden via e-mail groepen.

Dr. Gilbert is lid van een linksradicale splinterpartij in Noorwegen. Hij was in de jaren ’70 vrijwilliger op een kibboetz en werd nadien actief voor de Palestijnse zaak.


The Lancet is een gerenommeerd Brits medisch tijdschrift, maar raakte al vaker in opspraak door controversiële politieke stellingnames, zowel betreffende Israel als andere onderwerpen.





Surprise! Doctors who wrote Lancet anti-Israel letter are antisemites


From The Telegraph:


For almost 200 years, it has been regarded as a well-respected medical journal.

But according to senior British medical figures, the Lancet is being hijacked to campaign indefatigably against Israel, and used as a platform by alleged conspiracy theorists.

In August, it published a controversial “open letter for the people of Gaza” that condemned Israel in the strongest possible terms, but strikingly made no mention of Hamas’ atrocities.

The five principal authors of the letter made it clear that they had “no competing interests”. However, all of them have campaigned vociferously for the Palestinian cause over many years.

In addition, a cache of emails openly available in Google groups show that two of the authors, Dr Paola Manduca and Dr Swee Ang, have sympathies with the views of David Duke, a white supremacist and former Ku Klux Klan Grand Wizard.

Dr Swee Ang, an orthopaedic surgeon, and Dr Manduca, a professor of genetics at the University of Genoa in Italy – who are both members of pro-Palestine NGOs – sent round-robin emails to their contacts promoting a video entitled “CNN Goldman Sachs & the Zio Matrix”.

The video features an extended anti-Semitic rant by Duke, in which he claims that “the Zionist Matrix of Power controls Media, Politics and Banking” and that “some of the Jewish elite practices racism and tribalism to advance their supremacist agenda”.

Dr Ang wrote: “This is a shocking video please watch. This is not about Palestine – it is about all of us!”

In another email, Dr Manduca forwarded a message alleging that the Boston marathon bombings were in fact carried out by Jews. “Let us hope that someone in the FBI us smart enough to look more carefully at the clues in Boston and find the real culprits behind these bombings instead of buying the Zionist spin”, it said.

Elsewhere, she shared an article comparing the Jewish state to a “strangler fig”, which grows around other trees and takes their sunlight, often resulting in the death of the original trees.

David Duke has been delighted by the apparent support of these respected doctors.“The latest group of people to join the ranks of those who have broken the chains of Zionist censorship have been a brave group of medical professionals,” he wrote on his blog.

In response to questions by the Daily Telegraph, Dr Manduca issued a statement in which she denied being anti-Semitic. “[But] I legitimately use my right of freedom of opinion,” she said, “and do not agree or value the politics of the government of Israel, nor of many others, including Jews in and out of Israel.”

For her part, Dr Ang said: “I didn’t know who David Duke was, or that he was connected to the Ku Klux Klan. I am concerned that if there is any truth in the video, that Jews control the media, politics and banking, what on earth is going on? I was worried.

She said that she was made aware of the video by a friend, Dr Kamal Alubaid, who appears to have been active on 9/11 "truth" websites. In one post, he referred to the Jewish State as "Racist Apparthide (sic) Israel".

Moreover, Dr Mads Gilbert, a third author of the letter, gave an interview with the Norwegian newspaper Dagbladet in 2001 in which he said that the 9/11 atrocities were as a result of Western foreign policy, and that he supported terror attacks in that “context”.

Israeli campaigners brought this information to the attention of the Lancet in a letter sent on 1 September. However, the journal has refused to issue a response and has not removed the open letter from its website – through which it collected 20,000 signatures in support of the letter.

“It's utterly irrelevant. It's a smear campaign,” the editor of the Lancet, Dr Richard Horton, told the Daily Telegraph. “I don’t honestly see what all this has to do with the Gaza letter. I have no plans to retract the letter, and I would not retract the letter even if it was found to be substantiated.”

Dr Horton, who has in the past spoken at rallies organised by Stop The War Coalition, denied that the journal's reputation would be damaged by giving a platform to people who appear to hold such views, and said that the Lancet is not intending to investigate the allegations.
NGO Monitor, an Israeli watchdog, points out that over the past 15 years, the journal has formed a number of partnerships with Palestinian groups, including the Lancet-Palestinian Health Alliance, Medical Aid for Palestinians and the Gaza Community Mental Health Programme.

By contrast, there have been no comparable collaborations with Israeli groups.

Professor Katz and a number of other senior medical figures have written to the medical ombudsman to register their complaints.

On 29 August, Professor Sir Mark Pepys, director of the Wolfson Drug Discovery Unit at UCL, wrote: “The failure of the Menduca et al authors to disclose their extraordinary conflicts of interest… are the most serious, unprofessional and unethical errors.

“The transparent effort to conceal this vicious and substantially mendacious partisan political diatribe as an innocent humanitarian appeal has no place in any serious publication, let alone a professional medical journal, and would disgrace even the lowest of the gutter press.”

He accuses Dr Horton, the Lancet editor, personally: “Horton’s behaviour in this case is consistent with his longstanding and wholly inappropriate use of The Lancet as a vehicle for his own extreme political views,” he says. “It has greatly detracted from the former high standing of the journal.”

In response, Dr Horton said: “How can you separate politics and health? The two go hand-in-hand.”


Somehow, however, Dr. Horton can separate clear antisemitism and politics.  He cannot even be bothered to issue a perfunctory denunciation of Jew-hatred.

Perhaps there is a reason for that.

NGO Monitor has more.

In the past couple of hours, Dr. Swee Ang issued this bizarre apology:


"I thought about the situation and if it is not too late, please would you kindly include my regret for circulating Dr Duke's lecture and my apology for the offence I have caused to many of my friends, both Jewish and non-Jewish in doing this. I have done this out of shock at the contents and my ignorance of the undercurrents, and will be more discerning in future about these kind of allegations."


Are we expected to believe that an educated doctor has no idea that blaming the Jews for having a secret conspiracy to control the world is offensive?

She is also on the record for justifying suicide bombings. But, hey, supporting cold-blooded murder isn't enough to convince The Lancet to question her opinions on politics and health. 


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