Posted Thursday, November 6, 2003

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Thursday, November 6, 2003


Prodi reassures US Jewish leaders after poll

THE US Jewish Community is going to organise a seminar in Brussels following recent survey results which saw a majority of EU citizens name Israel as the biggest threat to world peace.


David Irving comments:

YES, this appears to have been a case of democracy at its very worst: people being asked their private opinions, and despite all that the media can do, coming up with this truly appalling result.
   The outcome is clearly way off the map. There must have been something wrong with the pollsters, or their pencils, or their pads, or their attitude that day.
   Everybody knows that the fragrant little nation slandered in this poll is the most peace-loving on earth, and always has been, and that in consequence its people are the most widely loved -- nay, they are loved with a lasting and abiding sense of global affection, by everybody, wherever they may be -- whether beneath the tracks of a Caterpillar bulldozer, or crushed in the ruins of a home at Jenin, or stunned by the blast of a salvo of missiles fired into a main street in Gaza by an American-built Apache helicopter gunship, or intimated by a German-built tank.
   If anybody does not love these truly affection-inspiring people, then he is manifestly a sick man indeed, and Europe must conjure forth seminars, with educational kits and all the other paraphernalia of mind-bending and brainwashing with which the world has been familiar since the end of the Holocaust.
   Just see how the President of Europe scuttles across the Atlantic, arms flailing wildly, to apologise for his people, and to seek absolution from the Anti-Defamation League and the World Jewish Congress in New York!

HOW apt was the well-known verse of Christian Morgenstern, the German humorist: Und damit schloss er messerscharf | dass nicht sein kann was nicht sein darf. I translated that once, in my Milch biography as, And thus in his considered view | what did not suit could not be true.
   No doubt some "experts" would call this translation lying, wrong, manipulated, and even false: but I am beyond repair; my beliefs are cast in stone, and I prefer my ways to those of the likes of Mr Prodi.
   Three cheers for democracy. I shall be a democrat henceforth.

The results published on Monday, sparked outrage in Israeli government circles and sent the Commission, which organised the poll, into a diplomatic tailspin.

European Commission President Romano Prodi had a hastily arranged meeting with representatives from the Anti-Defamation League and the World Jewish Congress, during a visit to New York on Tuesday (4 November).

At the meeting both sides agreed that a seminar should be organised in Brussels in order to find out why European citizens (59% of the around 7,500 surveyed) put Israel ahead of countries such as Iran and North Korea.

A date for the seminar has still to be agreed but a Commission spokesperson said it could be before the end of the year.

Mr Prodi also did much to mollify the Jewish community by distancing himself and his institution from the results.

"I am very concerned by the survey's findings: they reveal a prejudice that must be condemned without hesitation", he said in New York.

"In a Europe born out of horror for the war and the Holocaust there is no place for or tolerance of anti-Semitism".

Similarly, in an interview with Italian Newspaper, La Stampa, he said that the Eurobarometer neither reflects the opinion nor the policy of the Comission.

He went on to say that no countries should have been listed in the poll.

The poll conducted by telephone between 8 and 16 October asked 7,515 citizens what country they thought is the biggest threat to world peace. There were 15 countries on the list, including the US and Europe.

A spokesman for the Commission denied that the poll had been political.

"It was a technical business", he said on Tuesday.


Written by Honor Mahony.


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