The Appalling Sir Daniel Bethlehem

by craig on February 14, 2013 2:07 pm in Uncategorized

This is Sir Daniel Bethlehem, a man who is to me an embodiment of the appalling moral vacuum at the heart of the British establishment.

Sir Daniel in a public international lawyer who has specialised in Middle eastern issues, and has always found it to be his genuine and considered legal opinion that the law supports the neo-conservative agenda for the Middle east.

Bethlehem first came to the attention of the general public as the man who advised the Israeli government that it was legal to build their “security” wall slicing through the West Bank and disrupting Palestinian communications and access to fields and water resources. Bethlehem was then the counsel to the Israeli government at the resulting case before the International Court of Justice.

The International Court of Justice – along with the vast majority of reputable international lawyers – disagreed with Daniel Bethlehem, and Bethlehem and the Israeli government lost the case. The Israeli government however disregarded the court’s judgement and continued its illegal activity.

Nowhere can I find evidence that Bethlehem has condemned the Israeli government for flouting the authority of the court before which he appeared. His commitment to the institutions of public international law appears somewhat partial.

The British Foreign and Commonwealth Office has a department of Legal Advisers who are closely integrated and involved in virtually everything the FCO does; I must have consulted them at least 60 tims in my own career. They are extremely distinguished individuals and a major source of scholarly articles on all aspects of public international law. They include some of the most respected experts in international law in the world.

The FCO legal advisers – of whom there are approximately 20 – agreed unanimously that the proposed war in Iraq would constitute an illegal war of aggression. As Foreign Secretary, Jack Straw’s response was to push for the removal of the chief Legal Adviser, Sir Michael Wood (the No. 2, Elizabeth Wilmshurst, resigned in disgust). Straw then, against all precedent, recruited a chief Legal Adviser from outside the FCO corps, one of the few public international lawyers in the UK prepared to argue that the Iraq invasion was legal.

Who did Straw choose? The Israeli Government’s trusty adviser, Daniel Bethlehem. Forget that his arguments for the Wall of Terror had been dismissed by the ICJ, the important thing for Straw was that Bethlehem was On the Right Side. He was prepared to argue the Iraq War was legal; that made him better qualified than any internal candidate.

Inside the FCO Bethlehem continued to be On the Right Side. This fascinating document contains the following extract of a minute from Matthew Gould, Private Secretary to Straw and Adam Werritty and Mossad’s point man in the FCO, to Daniel Bethlehem. The intention is to bolster Bethlehem’s attempt to keep from the UK courts the details of the torture by the CIA of Binyam Mohammed, and British complicity therewith.

Discussions of 12 May 2009
[Email note of meeting by Matthew Gould, Principal Private Secretary to the Foreign
Secretary, addressed to Daniel Bethlehem dated 13 and 14 May 2009. The note of 14 May
responded to a request for clarification.]
Note of 13 May 2009
“1. On 12 May the Foreign Secretary raised the Binyam Mohamed legal case with Hillary
Clinton. Clinton was accompanied by Dan Fried (Assistant Secretary, State Department)
and Tobin Bradley (NSC); the Foreign Secretary by Nigel Sheinwald, Ian Bond and me.
2. The Foreign Secretary said that the Court had questioned the continuing non-release of
the US documents in the case given (1) the arrival of the Obama Administration, and (2) the
release of the 4 DoJ memos. The Court had said it could not see how, in the light of the
publication of these memos, anything in the US papers could be regarded as sensitive.
3. The Foreign Secretary said that the British Government would continue to make the case
that it continued to be an inviolable principle of intelligence co-operation that we did not give
away other peoples secrets, and that doing so would cause serious harm to the UK/US
intelligence relationship.
4. Clinton (who was clearly well aware of the case and the associated issues) said that the
US position had not changed, and that the protection of intelligence went beyond party or
politics. The US remained opposed to the UK releasing these papers. If it did so it would
– 4 –
affect intelligence sharing. This would cause damage to the national security of both the US
and UK.
5. Bradley said that this was also the position of the White House. They appreciated that this
left the British Government in a difficult position…

It is worth noting that yet again Bethlehem advised that the law supported the perpetrators of the most vile abuses of human rights, and yet again the most senior courts were to disagree with him.

It comes therefore as no great surprise that, having now left the FCO, Bethlehem is currently Legal Adviser to the vicious despotism of Bahrain. Sir Daniel Bethlehem – pillar of the British Establishment and a serial servant of evil. Sir Daniel Bethlehem advises that the invasion of Iraq was legal, the cover-up of complicity in the torture of Binyam Mohammed was legal, the Israeli Wall was legal, and the repression in Bahrain is legal.

Young lawyers take note; if you want to have a sword rested on your shoulder by an odd horsey woman, make sure your view of legal right never supports the oppressed, never defends the victim. There is a fat living in evil.

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  1. Time to check the rule book.
    Now where did we put it?

  2. Pleased I linked to him before on the Bahrain thread. One of nature’s ‘corpora vilia’ and immensely wealthy from his activities on behalf of the Zionist entity I should imagine and now Bahrain.

    His statement to the Chilcot theatrical/whitewash.

    I want to see Werritty hauled up. btw Foxy, Where is Werritty?

    Craig’s link now comes up fifth on a Google search for Daniel Bethelehem.

  3. A 16 year old boy has been killed there today in a protest to mark the anniversary of the uprising. He died from wounds to his abdomen. RIP young Ali Ahmed Ibrahim al-Jazeeri. Sadly you had a very short life. So unlike your self appointed and self proclaimed King who is now 63 and who graced us with his presence last year for lunch with our Queen, Mrs Elizabeth Windsor and family, on the occasion of her Diamond Jubilee.

  4. Habbabkuk (La vita è bella!)

    14 Feb, 2013 - 5:06 pm

    This is a challenge to the moderator.

    I have twice, in the last hour, posted a question asking whether Daniel Bethlehem is Jewish.

    I believe the answer to that question is of relevance to the man’s positions on various Middle East legal questions; it is as relevant as the knowledge that a totally unproportional number of the American neo-cons pushing for the Iraq and Afghanistan wars were Jewish.

    Why then do my comments appear to have been deleted by the moderator?

    Is this political correctness gone crazy?

    I hope you will reploy to this comment rather than again deleting it.

  5. ‘having now left the FCO, Bethlehem is currently Legal Adviser to the vicious despotism of Bahrain.’

    Is there a conveyor belt to sinecures in Bahrain for inveterately swarmy UK securocrats with ‘sound’ views on the right topics ?

    First Yates of the Yard, now this Bethlehem chap. I think we should be told.

  6. @Habbabkuk – not me, and I think Craig is the only other mod at the moment. In general, I tend to add a note that I’ve deleted something, unless there is a suspicion that doing so would cause friction.

  7. @Habbabkuk – Presumably your question is rhetorical. Nevertheless, I wonder if any other powerful nation has as many people whom it claims as citizens (some obvious, others far from it) holding positions of power and influence in other powerful nations?

  8. I believe that the USA, to pick an example completely at random, deems acceptance of a military commission or other senior rank in the service of any other nation to comprise giving up US citizenship. The reason are quite obvious.

  9. OMG, princess Anne stabs man through the throat!

    If I did that, I’d at least get an ASBO.

  10. The problem with dual citizenship is you just might end up dead.

  11. Jimmy, the movement of the sword should have come from right to left, but horsey woman can’t stand the sight of blood.

    ‘Triumph of the will’ now twinned with ‘the Gate keepers’

  12. Habbabkuk (La vita è bella!)

    14 Feb, 2013 - 6:40 pm

    @ Tom Welsh : actually, my question was not rhetorical. Unusually, I’m unable to find this information on the net. The (German) Wikipedia entry for Daniel Bethlehem, while giving details of his education (eg, BA in South Africa) avoids any mention of his family or his religious affiliation. Having said that, I imagine he is Jewish and I was just hoping someone could confirm (or invalidate, for that matter).

    The point behind my question is of course one I believe I’ve made before : it is unwise to appoint certain people to certain posts, at least at certain times. At present, for example,I would not appoint a Jew to be UK ambassador to Israel (and would not, incidentally, appoint a Muslim to an Arab country). In 5, 10 or 20 years time it might not matter.

  13. Tonight at 22,45 BBC 1 Question Time from Leicester.

    Mary Creagh LW Shadow DEFRA Confident and she is competent
    Frazer Nelson RW Spectator editor with that strange Scottish accent
    Maria Miller RW DCMS Out of her depth
    George Galloway No description needed!
    Susan Kramer Ex LD MP now in the Lords *

    So the questions will probably be on horsemeat and the food chain, the Scottish referendum, Leveson and press freedom, the Eastleigh by election, what is laughingly called the economy, perhaps the Papacy, the NHS, the EU, Immigration + one of the others is bound to find an opportunity to jeer at GG in some way or another.

    * Her late husband also American was a Goldman Sachs executive director here. He died in 2006 aged 58.

  14. Wood comes from the same chambers, 20 Essex Street.

    60 Years in International Law:
    Seminar in Honour of Sir Elihu Lauterpacht CBE QC LLD

  15. Habbabkuk (La vita è bella!)

    14 Feb, 2013 - 6:58 pm

    So, it’s Question Time again tonight and George Galloway is on the panel again.

    I wonder who from this blog’s Eminences will be the first to post – directly or by reference to a link – that once again there was a dastardly conspiracy to shut Galloway up, to interupt him rudely, to question him over-aggressively and to traduce the great man’s words, deeds and thoughts?

    Should I open a book for the occasion?


    La vita è bella, life is good (when George is on Question Time)!

  16. I haven’t seen this Israeli assassination reported elsewhere.

    Suspected Israeli agents kill IRGC Syria

    Assassinated Iranian commander Hassan Shateri (file photo)
    Thu Feb 14, 2013 12:59AM GMT

    A senior commander of Iran’s Islamic Revolution Guards Corps (IRGC) has been assassinated by suspected Israeli agents on the way from the Syrian capital Damascus to Beirut.

    General Hassan Shateri was reportedly killed on Tuesday by unknown gunmen as he was traveling by road from Syria to Lebanon.

    Israeli elements have been blamed for the assassination of the IRGC general, who led the Iranian-financed reconstruction projects in the south of Lebanon.

    His funeral ceremony will be held in Tehran on Thursday. He will then be laid to rest in his birthplace, Semnan, on Friday.

    In 2006, Israel launched a war of aggression against Lebanon that lasted 33 days and devastated most of the infrastructure and buildings in southern Lebanon.

    Since then, Iran has played a leading role in reconstruction efforts there.


  17. William billiard ball Hague says he will be holding the country to the highest standards of torture despite the regular outbreak of human rights.

    On the same day the two Saudi princes/ess worry about disclosure of their alcohol fuelled deeds. Surely by now we must be up to two supply deliveries per week to the Kingdom of Saud with the necessities of life behind curtains.

    ‘Triumph of the will’ now twinned with ‘the Gate keepers’

  18. Craig, I wonder if you and your readers are aware of Britam, a British military company at the centre of a propaganda scandal about chemical weapons in Syria.

    Britam admitted to having had their website hacked. After which, emails alleging their involvement in a proposed fake deployment of chemical weapons in Homs began to surface.

    The hack and the alleged emails have never been reported in western media.

    Britam Chemical Weapon Propaganda Scandal

  19. Fascinating this report. Der Spiegel is reporting in support of an anti European groundswell and sees nothing wrong with amplifying the cat calls to the three, yes that’s 3 only, sorry, supporters of a future EU.

    Most likely, with Merkel and Cameron clammering for a US trading block, a la the Monroe doctrine, i.e we take everything away from those pesky Africans and pay a pittance for it, only to then make a buck or three from the consumers. We also raid their fishing grounds because most of them have no navy’s to protect these grounds.

    If the EU is turning out to be just another TPP partner in crime. advancing a fascist hegemony and a war against Muslims, then it is probably the right time for it to fail.

    ‘Triumph of the will’ now happily twinned with
    ‘the Gate keepers’

  20. Craig,

    The sad truth is that the shit starts at the head of the stream and flows down.

    I make the foregoing, less than polite observation, with due regard for the domestic and international obligations of Her Majesty’s Government.

    One example of neglect and international bundling is the FCO’s total cock-up of its handling of the purported extradition attempts to bring the former Premier of the Turks and Caicos Islands back home to face justice.

    The context of the whole debacle flows upstream right back to London – Lord Michael Ashcroft. And therein lies the rub. Read below to get a glimpse….

    “Letter: The TCI’s shambolic judicial system
    Published on February 9, 2013

    Dear Sir:

    The TCI’s justice system has recently provoked an onslaught of public criticism. Most of the criticism is long overdue, fair, and reasonable. The attorney general and the president of the Bar Association, however, have come running to its defence, with less than subtle threats of fines and imprisonment. Those threats, in turn, have rightfully caused even wider public indignation.

    In a criminal justice system that is adversarial, with a prosecution and defence on opposite sides, an independent judiciary is critical, but at the top of most lists of criticisms are grave concerns about the independence of the local judiciary. There is a perception that there is little distinction between the FCO, the SIPT, the former legislature, the governor, the local judiciary, and that the criminal justice system has been compromised, having been sewn up to ensure convictions of the SIPT’s targets, regardless of the evidence of actual guilt or innocence.

    This is part of the case against the TCI’s criminal justice system:

    There has been a systematic and methodical overhaul of the law over the last three years, most notably the constitutional right to trial by a jury of one’s peers, to make specific convictions much easier.

    There has been constant tinkering with laws, in some cases immediately after a challenge reveals limitations on certain investigative powers. The changes that have been made erode our constitutional freedoms and rights in order to stack the deck in favour of the SIPT. Critics say it is like playing a board game against an opponent who has the ability to change the rules, mid game, and who frequently does so.

    Judges have apparently engaged in verbal exchanges with persons in the guest gallery in open court, answering complaints about the adequacy of seating arrangements with opinions about the extravagant and misplaced spending choices of local government and the merits of the complaints, eerily echoing sentiments frequently expressed by the governor.

    On certain SIPT applications the court has deferred its statutory obligation to keep proper records of its proceedings to the SIPT, presumably on the basis that the court’s staff cannot be trusted with the information. We know of no other jurisdiction where this happens, but in any event the clear casualty of that choice is the perception that the TCI has an independent and impartial judiciary.

    There are reports that the SIPT are misleading the judiciary on basic principles of law and on issues of fact and that the court is mindlessly and blindly accepting self-evidently false and material assertions of fact, dancing around what should be obvious.

    There are reports that the Governor’s Office has been speaking with the judiciary on sensitive political matters before the court, apparently only to get an update. Given the governor’s frequently expressed political opinions, critics argue that he should not be communicating with the judiciary at all on undecided cases, even for an update.

    What is interesting about the threats is that most of the public criticism has been the charge that there is no separation of powers and that the judiciary has become the handmaiden of the FCO. In a March 2011 speech, the chief justice of England and Wales championed freedom of the press as one of two fundamental institutions in a free and democratic society; the other being an “independent judiciary” separate from the executive or government. He said that both are interdependent, and that in the absence of a free press an independent judiciary is not likely to flourish or fulfill its true constitutional purpose. He insists that in a properly functioning liberal democracy both protect each other.

    I think there is merit to that view and, indeed, in the wake of recent and heavy criticism of the judiciary the very judge who engaged guests of the court in exchanges about the adequacy of seating and local government’s spending choices, echoing the frequently expressed sentiments of her boss the governor, finally discovered the fortitude to call out the SIPT on a request to ridiculously restrict the travel plans of one of its targets. Sometimes the obligation to apply the law without favour requires encouragement from a free press.

    Jonathan Gardiner”

    “The Turks and Caicos Islands Judiciary

    By: Courtenay Barnett
    Les Green, a senior police officer seconded from Scotland Yard in 2004 to Jamaica as Assistant Commissioner of Police, recalled in the ‘Daily Mail’ his experiences with Jamaica’s “backward police system” ( his words) – see: below
    He stated in a forthright manner his honestly held, though less than complimentary, views about the state of justice and policing in Jamaica.
    The Turks and Caicos Islands (TCI) ,to rely on Green’s observations about Jamaica, is itself, but particularly its judiciary, “like stepping back in time” when one considers my experiences over a quarter century of practising law in the TCI.
    In the mid-1980s a professional colleague, Lloyd Rodney ( a cousin of the famed Walter Rodney), challenged ultra vires charges being imposed by the monopoly telecommunications giant, Cable and Wireless. The judiciary of the Supreme Court at the time was comprised of one judge, who was also automatically the Chief Justice of the TCI. Sadly, when the main case was argued we subsequently discovered that Sir Fredrick Smith, who presided, was the Chairman of the Board of directors and a shareholder of Cable and Wireless. On appeal we won the case and one thought that the Chief Justice would have resigned. Governor Michael Bradley renewed Chief Justice Smith’s contract, being then the Constitutionally designated person to appoint judges . The reality of having brought the justice system into disrepute, coupled with being unable to sit on any further Cable and Wireless cases did finally compel Smith to tender his resignation. The judiciary, it was to be expected, might now advance and function with more credibility.
    The next appointed Chief Justice in the TCI was Lindsey Worrell, a friend of Fredrick Smith, the former Chief Justice. There were problems with Worrell and Rodney petitioned, under the constitution, for his removal and his contract was not renewed. The judiciary, it was to be expected, might now advance and function with more credibility.
    The next appointed Chief Justice was Kipling Douglas, the brother-in-law of Fredrick Smith, the former Chief Justice. There were problems with Douglas about his competence and misbehavior on the Bench, so Rodney and myself both petitioned under the Constitution for his removal and he left after I also sued him in his personal capacity for publishing defamatory remarks about me. The newspaper formally apologised when the statement was established to have been untrue that the TCI government had condemned Rodney and me. The judiciary, it was to be expected, might now advance and function with more credibility.
    A Court of Appeal Bench resigned en bloc when an English Registrar informed the Caribbean President of the Court, Justice Astwood, that judicial pay would be docked, in an unprecedented manner, in circumstances where at the end of a Court session an emergency required Mr. Astwood to leave a day or two earlier than initially scheduled. The Chief Justice at the time, Richard Ground, is now a judge on the Court of Appeal. The judiciary, it was to be expected, might now advance and function with more credibility.
    At present, the sitting Supreme Court Chief Justice is Edwin Goldsbrough, and a group of lawyers led by the Advocates Legal Group, is on general strike ( see: 2 below). The judiciary, it was to be expected, might now advance and function with more credibility.
    In consequence of quite vociferous concerns expressed from various sections of civil society about the state of the judiciary in the Turks and Caicos Islands, the Attorney General issued a press release that those criticising the judiciary could run the risk of being prosecuted for contempt of court by way of scandalizing the court and be fined $50,000 or be imprisoned for two years if convicted. In consequence of his published threat, he was publicly responded to with a reminder that the offence he referred to was obsolete and abolished in England ( see: 3 below ).
    Thus, since the European Convention on Human Rights applies to the Turks and Caicos Islands and parity of rights for the subjects of the UK on the mainland and in HMG’s territories is intended, there should be equality of treatment within and outside the UK. As Les Green had observed in another context, at times dealing with these prevalent instances of judicial compromises in the Turks and Caicos Islands appears to be “like stepping back in time”. The judiciary, it was to be expected, might now advance and function with more credibility.
    The issues that impact the TCI judiciary have been publicly indicated and stated in some detail ( see: 4 below).
    The difficulty has been and remains, that with the exception of a few reasonable, diligent and principled Chief Justices, Gordon Ward who performed in a reasonable and acceptable manner and his immediate predecessor, Christopher Gardner, who noted administrative deficiencies in the dispensation of justice and implemented very helpful reforms, there has long been a pattern of arrogance, indifference, neglect and compromises which have plagued the TCI judiciary. The non-responsiveness to legitimate causes of concern openly and honestly expressed by the public is presently giving rise to serious concerns whether in the Judicial administration – it really is “like stepping back in time”.
    The Turks and Caicos Islands, as a British overseas territory, remain the lawful responsibility of Her Majesty’s Government. “Good governance” principles do bind Her Majesty’s Government. There is a need to address the manifest responsibilities (including suitable appointment of an Attorney General, competent Governors and responsible oversight of the judiciary) in respect of which duties HMG is bound by the provisions stipulated under the United Nations Charter (see: below 5).
    These duties do require much more than exoneration by affirmative statements merely expressing palatable political rhetoric in public fora, but more essentially require conduct which on an objective basis can be seen on the part of HMG as being effective and practical as distinct from being illusory, deceptive or theoretical. Then, perhaps, the judiciary might now advance and function with more credibility.
    1. Read:
    2. Read:
    3. Read:
    4. Read:
    5. Read:
    Courtenay Barnett is a graduate of London University. His areas of study were economics, political science and international law. He has been a practising lawyer in the Turks and Caicos Islands for over twenty five years. He has been arrested for defending his views, has faced a death threat and a threat of arson on his home. He has argued many public interest and human rights cases. Lloyd Rodney (deceased) and Courtenay Barnett are the only two persons or lawyers in the TCI who were ever arrested and convicted for scandalising the court when they on oath in affidavits pointed out substantial compromises of justice in the TCI and lodged two petitions calling for the removal of a Chief Justice alleged with facts stated on oath to be incompetent and to be misbehaving. Rodney was arrested, imprisoned and shackled while in his hospital bed, then on release he successfully sued and won. The last time that the offence of contempt by way of scandalising the court was successfully prosecuted in England was 1931.
    4th February,2013”

  21. ” Young lawyers take note; if you want to have a sword rested on your shoulder by an odd horsey woman, make sure your view of legal right never supports the oppressed, never defends the victim. There is a fat living in evil.”


  22. Not rhetoric Tom, more intellectual emptiness in a puerile attempt to seed, propagandize and entangle, thus embroiling the contention that criticism of neoconservatism is often a euphemism for criticism of Jews.

    Pathetic flame.

  23. Gari Sullivan One of the directors of Britam Defence Ltd

    is a Sir Michael Wilkes.

    He is also s director of Heritage Oil which is an outfit belonging to Tony Buckingham and registered in Jersey. It explores for oil reserves –

    • The Group has producing properties in Oman and Russia and exploration
    projects in Uganda, the Kurdistan Region of Iraq (the “KRI”), the Democratic
    Republic of Congo (the “DRC”), Malta, Pakistan and Mali;

    Note Mali.

    General Sir Michael Wilkes, aged 67, Non-Executive Director
    General Sir Michael Wilkes KCB, CBE, retired from the British Army (the “Army”)
    in 1995 as Adjutant General and Middle East Adviser to the British Government.
    As Adjutant General, Sir Michael was the most senior administrative officer
    within the Army and a member of the Army Board. During his distinguished career,
    he has seen active service across the world while also commanding at every level
    from Platoon to Field Army including commanding 22 Special Air Service Regiment
    and serving as the Director of Special Forces. Sir Michael is the
    Non-Executive Chairman of Cyberview Technology Ltd and a Non-Executive director
    of the Stanley Gibbons Group, both of which are listed on AIM. In addition he
    holds non executive positions on a number of private companies including Britam
    Defence and Trico Ltd and chairs the Advisory Board of PegasusBridge Fund
    Management Limited, a homeland security company. He joined the Group on 18 March

    An interesting CV for an ex Adjutant General I would think.

    The names Heritage Oil and Tony Buckingham are familiar to regular readers here!

  24. Habbabkuk (La vita è bella!)

    14 Feb, 2013 - 8:26 pm

    @ Nevermind (19h36) :

    “We also raid their {ie, African states’} fishing grounds because most of them have no navy’s (sic) to protect those grounds”

    This comment only has validity (and then only to a limited extent) if the word “raid” is being used figuratively.

    The EU recognises all coastal states’ 200 mile Exclusive Economic Zones and has therefore concluded fisheries agreements with a considerable number of African coastal states. The fisheries activities of EU member states’ vessels inside those African EEZs are regulated by those agreements and cannot be considered to be “raids”.

    If the word is being used figuratively, in the sense of “EU vessels are getting fishing opportunities too cheaply” then a case could be argued.


    Der Spiegel is considered a bit of a busted flush these days and I would tend to view its positions on a number of issues – inclusing the EU – with a degree of scepticism. But, of course, it’s up to every individual to choose, or, as some might prefer to put it, “Jedem das Seine”.


    La vita è bella, das Leben ist schoen !

  25. Potential US$100m claim – and – HMG has contingent liability….


    Lawyers for Trade Wind Industries Limited, owners & operators of the Caicos Conch Farm,
    appeared in the Providenciales courtroom of Judge Margaret Ramseay-Hale this week in
    the case of Trade Wind Industries Limited vs The Governor of The Turks & Caicos
    Islands and the Government of the Turks & Caicos Islands.

    The case involves allegations that the Governor (on behalf of the Crown) and the TCIG have
    failed to honor the terms and conditions of leases signed with TWI in 1985 and 1988 and
    a Development Agreement signed with TWI in 2010.

    Lawyers for The Governor and The Government had sought to compel TWI to “arbitrate” the
    legal issues in secret while TWI was intent on a civil trial in a courtroom that is open to the

    Judge Margaret Ramsaey -Hale ruled that many of the pertinent issues were not covered
    by the arbitration clause and directed that all the issues in the case should be heard in
    open court.

    The apparent incompetence of Attorney General Huw Sheppard and Governor Ric Todd in
    failing to honor the terms & conditions of the Development Agreement that was signed with
    TWI in 2010, coupled with the false and slanderous comments uttered by Governor Ric Todd
    regarding TWI, has now exposed The Governor and The TCIG to a public trial and a potential
    100 million dollar claim for breach of contract, malicious falsehoods, defamation and unlawful
    interference with TWI`s economic interests.

    The shareholders and employees of the Caicos Conch Farm look forward to hearing Governor
    Ric Todd and Attorney General Huw Sheppard explain their arbitrary and unlawful conduct from
    the confines of a witness stand while under oath where they cannot hide from the truth.

    The Caicos Conch Farm”

  26. I read your posts with interest Courtenay. The contents of your biographical notes shocked me. I didn’t know you had been arrested and had received a death threat. The influence and the tentacles of our ghastly empire extend a long way obviously.

    Could you briefly tell us what life is like for the average person there, is is a struggle to make a living, is the system completely corrupt and feudal and how are we in the UK viewed, if at all? Is the monarchy supported? As the government was suspended in 2009 who is running the show? Thank you in anticipation.

    I have been looking through the long Wikipedia page. I see you have invasions of American and Canadian tourists who outnumber your population.

  27. @nevermind

    Why would the fascist hedgedemonic overlords push for an open borde policy on European lands and yet instigate hatred and push for war?

    In a nutshell its colonialism in reverse.

  28. doug scorgie

    14 Feb, 2013 - 9:38 pm

    Habbabkuk (La vita è bella!)
    14 Feb, 2013 – 5:06 pm

    “I have twice, in the last hour, posted a question asking whether Daniel Bethlehem is Jewish.”

    Habbabkuk you have said that you are an intellectual supremo on this blog. So why did you feel the need to ask your ridiculous question?

    With a name like Daniel Bethlehem perhaps he is Jewish but why does that matter to you? And why can’t you find out the answer for yourself?

    Is he a Zionist would perhaps be a more appropriate question don’t you think?

    But then again what makes you ask your original question; is he Jewish?

    Perhaps he’s a Welsh nationalist with an unusual name (for a Welshman).

    We know you have an agenda.

  29. Off topic I know but it matters

    Police investigating allegations that horsemeat was mislabelled as beef have arrested three men on suspicion of offences under the Fraud Act.

    However no arrests have been made for miss-selling Payment Protection Insurance by Banks.

    No arrests have been made by the police investigating the Libor fraud.

  30. Habbabkuk, 14 Feb, 5:06 pm, as I think you know, I used to moderate here, but I stopped and my access was revoked. I’ll just confirm that I didn’t delete any comments of yours, and couldn’t any more in any case.

    However, I suspect that your comments were just being deleted on sight of your name, as so many of your comments have been pissing people off. I know that you claim to be merely challenging sloppy thinking, but I for one have often found your style needlessly abrasive and aggressive. I note that your comments on this thread, or at least those that remain, are much less so. Please keep it that way. You could also remove the “La vita è bella!” from your screen-name, considering that you explicitly stated that you added it deliberately to annoy people.

    Please don’t reply, as this is off-topic.

  31. A friend sent this which is behind the Ha’aretz paywall. I have not used para breaks to save space.

    Haaretz 14.02.13

    Israel’s dark deeds

    It is still possible to make people disappear even in the Israel of 2013. On whom can Israelis rely to report how many there are and who are they?
    And what about Arabs and Palestinians, who don’t have an investigative reporting TV program on Channel 2? How many of them have been made to disappear and have disappeared, “committed suicide” and died?

    By Gideon Levy

    Many thanks to Australian television, which has reminded us of what a dark state we are living in. Many thanks to the three Israel-hating members of the Knesset – Zahava Gal-On (Meretz), Ahmed Tibi (United Arab List-Ta’al) and Dov Khenin (Hadash) – for saving its honor. And many thanks to a handful of media outlets and human rights organizations for trying to do their job despite everything.
    All the rest should now be ashamed. They should be feeling profound shame for having betrayed their responsibilities, thereby committing a far greater act of betrayal than the implied act of treachery ascribed to citizen Ben Zygier. But more than that, they should also be forced to face and account for the imbecilic role they play in the Israeli regime. Alongside the organizations of darkness was the collaborating judicial system, the newspaper editors who were keen to bring back the days of the disgraceful editors’ committee, the newspapers and the broadcast channels that only two days ago were trying to suppress the affair – all the agents, lawyers, jailers, censors, police and investigators who knew and kept quiet.
    A person was made to disappear in Israel – not the first and apparently not the last person, and maybe not the only one at this time, either – and they acted as though they didn’t have the slightest idea. This raises very big questions. The State of Israel tried to flip another switch off and bring down more darkness. Who are the Electric Corporation employees compared to those operators? When the late electricity workers union boss Yoram Oberkowitz turned off the switch, we all at least knew about it (and raised an outcry). When Mossad director Tamir Pardo does it, Israelis don’t even know. Most of them, presumably, would not make any noise even if they did know. That’s how it is when the religion is security and hush-hush is the ritual. That’s how it is when in the name of these idols it is permissible to do anything here: to assassinate, to make people disappear, to torture and imprison.
    There will be a day when it becomes clear just how much good was cultivated in the shadows and how much damage and terrible rot grew there. How many of these dark deeds were essential and how many were no more than infantile adventures of those who love this genre, those who run the country, who are addicted to these deeds and think the public doesn’t even deserve to know.
    Little is known about the affair, too little. But even the spotty details that are known cannot justify the disappearance of a person. Nothing can justify it. Zygier was an Australian, the circumstances of whose life and death are hidden in the fog. Maybe he committed suicide, maybe he was murdered. Maybe he committed treason, maybe not. And how will we know? Will we continue to rely on what they tell us? Is it conceivable that we will not know? Most likely there are others like him. And how will we know how many there are and who they are? On whom can we rely to report to us?
    Okay, an Australian, and an investigative program in his country. And what about Arabs and Palestinians, who don’t have an investigative reporting TV program on Channel 2? How many of them have been made to disappear and have disappeared, “committed suicide” and died?
    After all, even in Israel, disgracefully, there is no truly subversive investigative program. And there is a court system and a censorship system which, in their gall and stupidity, withhold from citizens information that was broadcast on Australian television.
    The thought that there is a handful of Israelis who have their finger on the switch, and on the prison lock, and only they decide what the public will know is chilling. Chilling, as is the thought that even in the Israel of 2013 it is still possible to make people disappear. We thought Mordechai Kedar, who in the 1950s was tried on secret charges, and even supposed KGB agent Marcus Klingberg belonged to the past, to those cold days that would never return.
    And then along came this current affair and proved that nothing has changed. This is Israel, like sinister regimes; this is Israel, like the 1950s, here and now. Indeed it was just yesterday that Judge Tal Avraham prohibited publication of any identifying detail regarding “the respondent’s wife and his two daughters, including their place of residence.” Why? Concerning those details, too, we will have to wait for the good graces of Australian television.
    Zygier’s blood is crying out now. But this isn’t a matter of the circumstances of his life and death. This is a matter of something much deeper: This affair is not (only) one that concerns him. It is an affair that concerns all of us, and tomorrow it will be forgotten.

  32. Habbabkuk, the clue to your deletions may also lie here. Repeating a comment made on the Iranian thread.

    ” I consider myself to be the intellectually most honest commenter on this blog and also the most open-minded and least ‘politically correct’. Only fools anjd knaves would contest this.”

    We did a little survey here while you were away:

    The bad news: You are perceived as a tactless megalomaniac across the board. Reconfirmed by your “I consider myself to be the intellectually most honest commenter on this blog” and earlier claims of “intellectual firepower”, “quality control”, etc.

    The good news: Yes we all agree life is good, even for an empty vessel making a lot of noise!

    The consensus: “The real world’s very good for you, you know” and that you should be given an immediate and indefinite sabbatical from this blog.

  33. Habbabkuk (La vita è bella!)

    14 Feb, 2013 - 11:03 pm

    @ Doug Scorgie (21h38) :

    Normally I wouldn’t bother to reply to your post as it is not a serious contribution to the debate.

    But there is one difference between a Jew and a Zionist which could be of importance in certain situations or contexts. It is that any Jew can become a citizen of Israel on simple request. A Zionist, however, is not necesssarily a Jew, and those Zionists who are not Jews cannot become citizens of Israel with the same facility.

    As I’ve remarked before, it would be interesting to see how many British Jews in high positions are also citizens of Israel. One thing is sure : Israel itself is full of people with two nationalities.

  34. Habbabkuk (La vita è bella!)

    14 Feb, 2013 - 11:07 pm

    @ Villager : yes, fine, but who are the “we” ? You and the other Eminences have no status on this blog, after all.


    La vita è bella, life is good (and it’s good that we all agree) !

  35. Habitual Babbler, the term Eminences here is your doing and immature responsibility. Part of your provocative and offensive style, Clark has highlighted above. Therefore the we includes the silent majority here, many of whom are put off commenting because of the atmosphere you have deliberately gone about setting in Craig Murray’s blog/home. He is none the impressed , made obvious by Jon’s note above, in case you are too darn thick to absorb. Grow up and stop your Smart Alec crap here.

    If Craig wants to appoint you as the Quality Assurance Superintendent, i suspect he will. Until then behave and engage tactfully rather than as a superior to an inferior. Just stop it!

    If there are people out there who disagree fundamentally with what is being said here, please raise your hand and say so.


    So what are the answers to all the absurditys?


    Sorry to question your authority. I hope the local politics is working out for you.

    It seems here Britain and Europe are being run by a fanatical football chairman and all the irrational decisions are all made with one eye on selling of the stadium and re-mortgaging on a spangly out of town new one built on a Macdonalds and Pizza Hut.

    Most here as I have it easy, what hurts is the knowledge that we do have it easy and there are less fortunates. As the Bahrainies who Craig highlights.

    Maybe we are missing the tiger who came to tea.

    More love to Craig.

  37. So what are the answers to all the absurditys?


    Sorry to question your authority. I hope the local politics is working out for you.

    It seems here Britain and Europe are being run by a fanatical football chairman and all the irrational decisions are all made with one eye on selling of the stadium and re-mortgaging on a spangly out of town new one built on a Macdonalds and Pizza Hut.

    Most here as I have it easy, what hurts is the knowledge that we do have it easy and there are less fortunates. As the Bahrainies who Craig highlights.

    Maybe we are missing the tiger who came to tea.

    More love to Craig.

  38. Jonangus Mackay

    15 Feb, 2013 - 2:34 am

    Is Bethlehem a Zionist? Is the next Pope a Catholic? Strange that the German edition of Wikipedia has an entry on Sir Daniel but the English-language one hasn’t. Most unusual.
    Passports? What Passports? Latest on the grisly fate of someone else running errands on behalf of Germany-on-Sea:

  39. Craig wrote, “..the appalling moral vacuum at the heart of the British establishment.

    In my mind such a powerful statement is a harrowing cry that the vile and unethical void be filled and cleansed by the oxygen of ethics and the natural law.

    Craig has used the adjective ‘appalling’ and I believe his post centrally refers to a clique-grown-cabal that sanctioned the mass murder in, and the destruction of, the sovereign state of Iraq.

    I strongly believe and not in a pompous way it is our duty here as principled citizens of outstanding judgement to breath hope, future guidance and purity into that dark terrene; for the integrity of our country and the world. Clearly the burden of determining the legality of the Iraq war falls on us, the people, because the establishment has clearly failed preferring to bury or cloak much of the evidence in secrecy.

    In law Her Majesty’s Attorney General, Lord Goldsmith at the time said, “the legitimacy of pre-emptive armed attack as a constituent of the inherent right of individual or collective self-defence under Article 51 of the United Nations Charter.”
    He also said, “It is argued by some that the language of Article 51 provides for a right of self-defence only in response to an actual armed attack.”

    The resolutions passed by the Security Council after the ‘terrorist’ attacks on 11 September 2001 recognise both that large-scale ‘terrorist’ action could constitute an armed attack that will give rise to the right of self-defence and that force might, in certain circumstances, be used in self-defence against those who plan and perpetrate such acts and against those harbouring them, if that is necessary to avert further such terrorist acts. It was on that basis that United Kingdom armed forces participated in military action against Al’Qaeda and the Taliban in Afghanistan.

    I struggle to decide what is a ‘test of imminent attack’ as I have no crystal ball to see into the future. I ask, can such a test determine the lies that became evident as we were told by government there was an imminent WMD threat to British assets that could strike in 45 minutes? The details are burn into our conscious, yet importantly –

    -a million maimed and murdered children need a voice, our voice. Many more future children also need our consensus.

    From the ashed of Chilcot can we, the people, perform the autopsy and deliver hope with atonement? Can we make judgement?

  40. English Knight

    15 Feb, 2013 - 5:45 am

    Is a ducks ass watertight? Is hubbabkyk a Dorkshireman……?!!

  41. Yes, I was surprised at the absence of a wikipedia entry too. Can we supply the deficit?

  42. It is a mistake though to assume that this clique or cabal is all powerful and invulnerable, with eyes and ear everywhere and influence permeating all that we survey. With just a few, leading and inflicting their vile, conscienceless, remorse-free agenda on the many, aided by hordes of useful idiots thinking they are just swimming with the tide, doing what they need to survive, who if they cannot be killed can be rehabilitated to serve honourable ends.

    Assassination, decapitation of the fascist regime in totalitarian control here on this island concentration camp, tactics which once seemed uncharacteristic, more in keeping with some mythical South American republic where revolutions occurred per minute and scarcely merited mention, which we’ve been taught would be un-British, seems with every passing day to seem a very worthy strategy. It is now the case that our leaders and betters spend ever more on personal security precautions and spend every waking second looking over their shoulder and in perpetual alarm that their criminally insane reign of terror will catch up with them in the end. Even torture must be re-visited as justified, not uselessly for information but as punishment, monarchs, prime ministers, cabinet members, press barons, MPs -unquestionably culpable mass-murderers mustn’t end their days peacefully in their beds.

    Drastic circumstances require a temporary descent to deal with those responsible.

    Today is as good a day as any for the war-mongering tyranny to be stopped stone-dead.

    Pitchforks at the ready, folks. This government is going down.

  43. The video of last night’s debate is here.

    1hr 28mins Craig speaks at 25mins

    LIVE @ 7pm: Two years of revolution: Bahrain’s uprising and Britain’s position!

  44. Cryptonym,

    I know what you mean, but I certainly would not want any physical harm to come to any of these people. The sad truth is that people like Daniel Bethlehem are insulated from the social disapprobation which should attend their actions. I fully expect to hear from Carter Ruck shortly myself. The inability to mobilise proper and deserved social disapprobation of those who have enriched themselves by making a career out of neo-imperialism is frustrating but, as you note, not necessarily permanent.

    I expect Bethlehem is perturbed at finding this article on the front page if you google him. The absence of a wikipedia article speaks to a probably attention by him to internet image. That perturbation is precisely the effect I intended.

  45. If you google him on images, he never seems to be seen smiling. A melancholy man generally speaking. In this one, though, he is smiling.

    What is transitional justice btw? Is it when you are on your way in a Jetstream to to be tortured in a horror hole?

    Why unlike other members of the species Gastropoda, does he leave no trail?

  46. I am very angry this morning, the news is all bad, nothing can lift the feeling that despite an already burgeoning list of barbarities committed, new state crimes are already in the offing, with those responsible burrowing their co-conspirators ever deeper into the corrupt establishment and having an air about them suggesting they hope to get away with it.

    It gives no satisfaction that they won’t get away with it, if it will be after the fact and tremendous physical and psychic damage is done to countless victims destroyed along the way.

    These Zionist creatures and dual-citzens of Israel should fuck right off over there with a one-way ticket and no return or exit again ever. No (wo)man can serve divided interests.

  47. @ Clark,

    You may no longer be a moderator but you still come over as a pompous know-all git.

  48. That’s strange. I have just tried again and Craig’s piece is now fourth just under the row of images. Would that be the same for everyone or are search results personalized?

    I see Gideon George Orborne has called in to have a pop at Clark! :)

  49. Duh! Osborne

  50. Cryptonym – “Even torture must be re-visited as justified, not uselessly for information but as punishment”

    You mean like Bradley Mannings pre-trial treatment for leaking the collteral murder video and diplomatic cables that revealed the illegal warmongers contempt for diplomacy and international law; imprisoned naked in intense solitary confinement for a year, not allowed to sleep soundly on ‘suicide watch’ facing a lifetime in military prison for his act of concience, unless the bloodlusting mafia who have him their can someday be overcome.

    Tempting but i dont think they can be overcome by their own means.

  51. Its fourth overall Mary, you depersonalise google with this,pretty much a secure proxy of google:

  52. I meant to say, one can do so ^^

  53. Craig, 15 Feb, 8:42 am, I logged into Wikipedia and created the page. That means that people without a Wikipedia account can now edit it:

    Please, folks, reference your sources, or it becomes my job to remove what you’ve added! If you can’t work out the formatting for adding proper references, just put it as plain text in normal, round brackets, and another Wikipedian will come along at some point and tidy it up, or maybe a “bot” will do it.

    This blog, unfortunately, probably doesn’t count as a “reliable source”, but you can give it a go.

  54. Interesting to see Craig Murray not chairing but a speaker. Actually glad as it no doubt meant he could participate more. The final comments from him really summed the situation up. UK Gov simply hopes to keep the lid on it all for another 20-30-50 years. Shameful indeed.

    I bet somewhere there will be documents/emails showing this attitude not only in relation to Bahrain but also the other Arab Spring uprisings.

  55. willyrobinson

    15 Feb, 2013 - 11:51 am

    “I fully expect to hear from Carter Ruck shortly myself.”
    The bit about Jack Straw was very interesting indeed, but I hope you don’t mind me saying there’s something a bit kamakaze about your writing sometimes…It’s up to you, but.

  56. Please, folks, go and add material to Wikipedia quickly, as the most likely method of getting it deleted at present is “lack of notability”. As soon as material backed by references from reliable sources has been added, it can’t be removed, because Wikipedia classes that as “vandalism”.

  57. @clark will do. have rated the article at 5 star too :)

  58. An easy way to add authoritative references is to reference Wikipedia itself. Daniel Bethlehem is already mentioned twice on Wikipedia:

    I can’t do any more now as I have a busy few days ahead.

  59. Oh yes, and only submit polite, well-referenced stuff. Daniel Bethlehem is still alive, so you have to comply with “biography of living persons WP:BLP” – libellous material WILL be removed.

  60. Exexpat, thanks for your promise to add material, but our page doesn’t deserve five stars yet! Keep it all very neutral, as much like an encyclopaedia article as you can make it; that way, it avoids being removed, because we don’t look like a load of amateurs grinding our axes. Let the facts speak for themselves.

  61. @Clark have linked both those articles to his page.

  62. Welcome mate, I have some spare time today. Ok have removed the ratings.

  63. Craig and others, if you don’t want to edit Wikipedia yourself, you can help by submitting authoritative sources to reference here so that others can use them. Government documents are ideal. Mainstream news articles are also considered “reliable sources” (yes, I know the mainstream news isn’t neutral, but that’s the rules…).

    Remember folks; bland, neutral. Bland, neutral.

    (I’m pissing into the wind, aren’t I? Since when has anyone been bland and neutral on this blog?)

  64. Sorry, another afterthought. You can’t just cut-and-paste text from “reliable sources” (except Wikipedia itself), as you’ll fall foul of plagiarism / copyright infringement, for which the penalty is, again, removal of your contribution. You have to write your contributions in your own words, and cite the source that you got the facts from.

    You CAN cut-and-paste from Wikipedia because everything is licensed under free(dom) licences. When you submit stuff, you’re agreeing that it is being published under the following licences. From then on, its duplication cannot be restricted:

    Now, I really must go. God speed you good contributors.

  65. Tinfoil hats on time – extra thick meteor proof variety. Just in case there are any other little brothers of DA14…

    Just about 6 hours to closest approach.

    Nothing to worry about. Probably :-)

  66. Habbabkuk (La vita è bella!)

    15 Feb, 2013 - 2:51 pm

    re Daniel Bethlehem : well, if my posts have led to the creation of an English language entry for the aforesaid individual then I’m well pleased. He certainly deserves one.

  67. Just this O?T reply to Jay, re: Denis McShane’s blog and his missives on Europe, designed for public consumption.

    “Protectionism is not just controls on trade. It is a whole ideological and governmental approach to relations between states. When William Hague says the Euro is like the sunken Italian cruise liner he is not just giving in to his penchant for crude anti-European jokes. He is revealing deeper isolationist-protectionism linguistics of part of the Tory Party which really does believe the UK would be better off out.”

    Hague is wrong on so many accounts and Denis does not want to see it.
    1. US/UK relations demand to have a EU base in this currency wear raging. Limited protectionism, looking at the current horse/donkey?/Kangaroo? meat scandal, the fact that Halal and Kosher meats cannot be guaranteed will make limited protectionism inevitable and the French will not like it, nor will the Dutch. Hague will eventually do as he is told.

    “There are rafts of new rules around the corner on banking, fiscal, financial sector, trade and tax aspects of transnational policy. Despite cracks by Hague and the rise of nationalist responses to the present economic crisis we are not going to create a beggar-my-neighbour Atlantic or global economy. The Eurozone is not going to collapse.”

    He has written this well before talks of a US EU trade pact were sanctioned by Ms.Merkel and Cameron in principal. The US has realised that new trade regulation and tax regimes will favour those within the EU, all those outside, bar Switzerland, will have their payments increased for trading within the EU, my guess, and those outside be subject to taxes that can only be carried by low cost producers like China and Vietnam. I think that this move for a common trading pact between the US and the EU will stifle our freedoms, and be to the detriment of the EU’s precautionary principles, dare I say GMO’s here, we will see our food chains obese’d’ and small independent traders bought out or busted with cheap competition.

    “The Germans will come round to ECB quantitative easing (like the Fed and BoE) as their political class realises that the disappearance of the Euro will unleash intra-European protectionist retaliations and a new DeutschMark will make German exports uncompetitive.”

    This is were I believe Denis is wrong as Germany’s phobia and its innate fear of inflation is stronger than in any other EU nation, Germany, cutting off the feeding stragglers from its nipples, would take a couple of years to get back on track, with or without the Deutschmark/ new World currency, but its modernisation and competitiveness is an evolutionary process, always modernising to guarantee market shares and up tom date technology is something they do well and we don’t, hence the imports of quality products, which will get more expensive if we extract ourself from the centre and leave.

    Just sayin’

    ‘Triumph of the will’ now happily twinned with ‘the Gate keepers’

  68. ‘Tory MP reveals eating disorder’.

    I thought this was going to be about Eric Pickles or Toby Baldry. No it’s Brooks Newmark when he was 17. A BBC non-story if ever there was one. He is a Conservative Friend of Israel incidentally and last went to Israel in 2006 under their auspices

    Then we jear Nadine Dorries’ expenses are being investigated. She’s a Con Friend of Israel and went to Israel there last year under their auspices.

    A quick trawl through the latest update to the Members’ Register of Interests reveals:

    Mr Andrew Percy’s visit to Israel under the auspices of the Australia Israel Cultural Exchange. That’s a new one!

    Name of donor: Australia Israel Cultural Exchange
    Address of donor: Suite 838, St Kilda Road Towers, 1 Queen’s Road, Melbourne, Victoria 3004, Australia
    Amount of donation (or estimate of the probable value): £1,416 Destination of visit: Israel and the Palestinian territories
    Date of visit: 7-10 January 2012
    Purpose of visit: participation in the Australia Israel UK Leadership Dialogue.
    (Registered 30 January 2012)

    On the same trip to Israel there was Debbie Abrahams, Michael Dugher, Louise Ellman, Jack Lopresti, Anne McGuire and John Spellar.

    The CFoI paid for Robert Halfon Officer CFoI to have 4 nights at the Tory Conference.

    SOAS paid for Duncan Hames to visit Israel as they did for Dai Havard.

    The entries above only cover the period 18 Jan to 4 Feb. Imagine what the annual record looks like.

    The CFoI website. I think that is Iain Dale in the photo.

    The Labour FoI website consists of one page with links. This is the Wiki page

    and bringing up the rear

  69. Nevermind Surely MacShane is an irrelevance now that he is a busted flush? In his time, he was a leading light in Labour FoI of course.

  70. Having demonstrated just one tiny fragment of the ‘machine’, I can agree with these words of David Ward MP, recently under attack.

    ■”There is a huge operation out there, a machine almost, which is designed to protect the state of Israel from criticism. And that comes into play very, very quickly and focuses intensely on anyone who’s seen to criticise the state of Israel. And so I end up looking at what happened to me, whether I should use this word, whether I should use that word – and that is winning, for them. Because what I want to talk about is the fundamental question of how can they do this, and how can they be allowed to do this.”

    Gilad Atzmon writes.

  71. Here’s a link to the German Wikipedia page on Daniel Bethlehem:

    Habbabkuk, you seem enthusiastic; would you translate that and add it to the English Wiki, please? There isn’t very much.

    Mary, we could really do with some of your digging…

    From the article’s history, it seems like we’re already getting help from other Wikipedians.

  72. Poor old David Ward. Now he’s getting it from Jennifer Lipman on the JC. John Hilley writes here. He is a tremendous Scottish activist for Palestine, and against Trident. He has been hauled off at demos at Faslane. He is also a fine writer and frequently contributes to Medialens.

    Jewish Chronicle’s ‘little detail’ problem in attacking David Ward
    Posted by John Hilley on February 15, 2013, 5:05 pm

    Not that I’m ever free from making the odd, elementary mistake, but there’s quite a bit at stake here with regard to careful use of language…

    JC’s ‘little detail’ problem in attacking David Ward

    There may be a certain reddish face just now at the Jewish Chronicle following a piece by JC writer Jennifer Lipman entitled, ‘Lib Dems could remove whip from ‘the Jews’ MP David Ward’.

    In the article, Lipman continues to berate Ward:

    The MP wrote on his website this week that he was a victim of “political and media hounding”.

    In the statement, he said: “Whatever lack of qualification or carelessness in his words, were we really to believe that [he] meant or implied that all Jews were/are responsible for Israel’s repressions?”

    The post added that Ward had linked the Holocaust and the situation in Israel only “in the obvious sense that the Holocaust was used as a part of the Zionist agenda for occupying another people’s land”.

    It said his “real ‘mistake’, as far as the Zionist lobby and many liberal commentariat are concerned – and as his Liberal colleague Jenny Tongue also found out to her cost – was to criticise Israel at all.”

    Alert readers to my own humble blog may recognise those words attributed by Lipman to Ward. In fact, they’re mine, not Ward’s at all, a detail that the most cursory examination of the piece and its footed source at Ward’s site would instantly show.

    The error – shall we be kind and not suggest calculated distortion – by Lipman was realised by fellow JC writer/blogger Matthew Harris in his piece: ‘David Ward blog post written by John Hilley’.

    Generously, Harris calls the gaffe “an intriguing PS” to Lipman’s “very interesting article”. Oddly, the words “careless” or even “carelessness in her words” didn’t seem to occur.

    An ironic omission, some might say, from someone who, like Lipman, shows no interest in letting up on David Ward’s own careless use of language – for which he’s apologised – or the essential points he’s been trying to make on Palestine-Israel.

  73. Good talk Craig, Thanks for rattling the cage, see what you mean about Carter Ruck…

    Mary, yes my thoughts exactly, but he had his finger on the pulse, the arch champagne socialist, MacShane could have been married to Barbara Castle, she liked to drive up in a Roller at the working man’s club.

    @ Craig, have you crossed swords with D. Bethlehem?

    according to his German Wiki side he worked at the International Tribunal of the Sea in Hamburg, in the Hague at the International court, in Luxembourg at the European court, worked for Malaysia, Israel and his ‘Heimatland’ England, were he was born. Educated in South Africa’s Witwaterstrand university 1981, were Apartheid schooling to the tune of the 1959 act was still in force, extending apartheid policy into higher education, right up to 1983 when a quota system bill was adopted, amending the act.

    So we can say with some security that his education was framed by Apartheid scholars, in a period of fervour when apartheid had hardened its factions and was under serious attack.
    It was the year when the Sprinbook tour outed Muldoon and his Government as Apartheid supporters and busted the Gleneagles agreement, when Golda Meir published her book ‘They must leave’ crystallising Israels Apartheid with slogans such as ‘there are no such people as Palestinians, they are all terrorists.’

    Just to paint a picture of the cauldron bubbling at that time, which no doubt helped to form young Daniel’s political ideas as well as his repressive future nature. He got a Ba in Politics at Witwaterstrand and I’m curious whether he studied under the ‘Blacks’, Coloured’ ‘Indian’ or ‘white’ label put on people between the years of 1980-83.

  74. forgot my rider, sorry

    ‘Triumph of the will’ now happily twinned with ‘the Gate keepers’

  75. New York Times


    Drones, Kill Lists and Machiavelli
    Published: February 13, 2013

    To the Editor:

    I am deeply, deeply disturbed at the suggestion in “A Court to Vet Kill Lists” (news analysis, front page, Feb. 9) that possible judicial review of President Obama’s decisions to approve the targeted killing of suspected terrorists might be limited to the killings of American citizens.

    Do the United States and its people really want to tell those of us who live in the rest of the world that our lives are not of the same value as yours? That President Obama can sign off on a decision to kill us with less worry about judicial scrutiny than if the target is an American? Would your Supreme Court really want to tell humankind that we, like the slave Dred Scott in the 19th century, are not as human as you are? I cannot believe it.

    I used to say of apartheid that it dehumanized its perpetrators as much as, if not more than, its victims. Your response as a society to Osama bin Laden and his followers threatens to undermine your moral standards and your humanity.

    Aboard MV Explorer, near Hong Kong Feb. 11, 2013

    The writer, winner of the 1984 Nobel Peace Prize, is archbishop emeritus of Cape Town.

    The article Bishop Tutu linked to –
    I have just checked his age and what the ship is. He is 82. He has amazing energy and joie de vivre.

  76. Thanks for the Gilad Atzmon link, Mary, always interesting to read.

    I would take issue with some of his points

    “The Holocaust was an historical abomination, an unquestionable genocide, which sought to eradicate an entire race of people, the Jews.”

    That might have been the rhetoric, but a physical impossibility as the second biggest group of Jews was in the US, by 1945 an estimated 15 million (when world Jewish population was from Jewish sources given as only 12 million in 1932!) I’d question too whether a religious grouping, effectively a cult, could ever claim to be a ‘race’.

    “The Holocaust formed a central ideological, political and militarist agenda in the Zionist formulation and creation of a Jewish state.”

    The offical Zionist formulation of a Jewish state in Palestine pre-dated the Holocaust by half a century, or longer if the inculcated ‘longing’ to return to a homeland that never was, is counted, this or that holocaust had nothing to do with it at all, the homeland idea was granted by Balfour against the wishes of the existing population in Palestine, again long pre-dating the holocaust. Given that homeland, no-one hardly from the world’s Jewish population wanted to go there after all, even concentration camp survivors on the whole had no interest in relocation to Palestine, but were misprepresented by a vocal few.

    Atzmon says (twice) “Anyone who seeks to deny or misconstrue these basic facts is either peddling lies, misinformed or uninterested in the truth.”

    Well, I do, I’ve enjoyed the honesty of much of his writing on this subject, but there is some dishonesty in the item linked which must be called out.

    With the same dishonesty, it could be said Hitler and the Nazis persecuted the Zionists.

  77. Habbabkuk (La vita è bella!)

    15 Feb, 2013 - 8:50 pm

    @ Craig re Daniel Bethlehem :

    here is a translation for you and others. I have no idea how to put something onto Wikipedia, so somebody else will have to do it. Feel free to improve my English and tweak the terminology.

    “Daniel Bethlehem was born in London in 1960 and grew up in South Africa, graduating from Witwatersrand University (Johannesburg) with a BA in political science and international relations in 1981. After returning to the UK he studied jurisprudence and took an LLB at Bristol in 1985 and an LLM at Queen’s, Cambridge.

    After spending several years working for an investment bank he was admitted to the Bar in 1988. From 1990 to 2006 he worked as a lawyer specialising in international law, first with Forrester Norrel and Sutton in Brussels until 1992 and in private practice in London thereafter. During this period he plead for the UK at the International Court of Justice and the International Law of the Sea Tribunal. He also plead for Malaysia, Belgium and Israel at the International Court of Justice, for Turkey at the International Court for Human Rights and for the USA at the Iran-USA Claims Tribunal.

    Daniel Bethlehem taught international law at the LSE from 1992 to 1998. From 1998 to 2003 he was Deputy Director and from 2003 to 2006 Director of the Lauterpacht Research Centre for International Law at Cambridge; during this time he was also a Fellow of Clare Hall, Cambridge.

    From 2006 to 2011 he was the Principal Legal Adviser, with the rank of Director General, at the Foriegn and Commonwealth Office. He re-entered private practice on leaving the FCO. He was the founding director of the consultants firm Legal Policy International. The Times included him in its list of the 100 most influential British jurists in 2008 and 2009.

    Daniel Bethlehem took silk in 2003 and was knighted (KCMG) in 2010. He is also a bencher of the Middle Temple.”

    There you go!


    La vita è bellissima (per il Sir Daniel)!

  78. Habbabkuk (La vita è bella!)

    15 Feb, 2013 - 8:54 pm

    sorry, I should probably have said @ Clark ! Too many “c”s !

  79. doug scorgie

    15 Feb, 2013 - 9:54 pm

    What next?

    Pentagon Creates Medal to Honor Drone Operators

    Defense Secretary Leon Panetta on Wednesday announced that the Pentagon can award the Distinguished Warfare Medal to drone operators, because although they are far from any battlefield, they have a direct impact on combat operations.

  80. Sir Daniel won’t be perturbed by your drunken ramblings, you old goat.
    He doesn’t dye his hair.

  81. “knight of the round table”!

    LOL got any more jokes to tell, you geriatric banker?

    The thing that gets my goat is when is see old fogies like you without an ounce of wisdom. Hopeless.

  82. How do the Americans (in this case the Canadians) manage to link todays meteor crashing in Russia’s Ural mountains, to North Korea?

    “According to Canadian astronomer Margaret Campbell-Brown, the blast could be even more powerful than North Korea’s recent nuclear test.”

  83. Habbabkuk, thank you, and thanks for being one of the more on-topic contributors to this thread. I’m off to have a look at the Wikipedia article now.

    Any who wish to contribute: I feel that I may have put some of you off. I know that I wrote “bland, neutral” and posted a lot of warnings. All your contribution has to be is factual, backed by reliable sources. You can add a section describing how he strangled puppies so long as it’s backed up in at least, say, the Daily Mail. And you can cut-and-paste short sections verbatim, so long as they seem pretty significant; that’s regarded as “fair use” under copyright law. And verbatim quotes of his own words can be added, too.

  84. Excessively flattering use of the English language here by Dapo Akande who was Bethlehem’s pupil.

    Other entries by the same person.

    and his profile. He is well qualified to put Bliar et al in the dock for war crimes.

  85. Does anyone else see the frightening potential of the following call from DB? Really, what are the chances of getting a lawyer with no connection or sympathies with Israel? And to then have such a person within a PM’s inner circle influencing decision-making or leaking information. Am I being overly suspicious?
    – – –
    5 June 2012
    A former legal adviser at the Foreign Office has said that legal issues are not addressed as effectively as they might be at the heart of government because the Prime Minister does not have a lawyer among his immediate circle of advisers.

  86. I always like to see the face behind the name. This is the cold hearted stooge Goran Rudling.

    Nasty stuff on his latest inc a photoshopped picture of Craig as Pinocchio.

    Ben has got in a good riposte.

    Ben on February 15, 2013 at 11:09 am said:

    ‘This article is simply horrible because it descends into the most childish form of personal insults. You don’t have to look beyond doctored pictures to see that; and it is a shame because some of your points are (probably, because I don’t know) factual corrections of oft-repeated details of the case.

    Getting facts right is important. But everybody also makes inferences based on facts, and providing that process is made explicit, it is perfectly justified and necessary. Thus Murray is quite correct to write: “Wilén had had long term relationships with men. It is improbable she found semen on the bedsheets unusual, yet alone disgusting.”

    Finally, I don’t think even Craig Murray’s political opponents in Britain regard him as dishonest. His unusual honesty about his sexual feelings should be to his credit, and not trigger a string of abuse.

    You would be better off arguing your points, rather than penning poisoned diatribes against those who get things wrong or with whom you disagree.’

  87. Sorry that was on the wrong thread. So many this morning, I can’t keep up! Not complaining though.

  88. Julian Kavanagh

    16 Feb, 2013 - 2:05 pm

    Craig, what has Princess Anne done to deserve your calling her ‘an odd horsey woman’? She didn’t make the decision to knight Bethlehem.

    But then reading your bizarre website, it’s clear she’s got off lightly. You’re clearly mad.

  89. It seems that Mr Murray’s ‘bizarre website’ provokes you enough to respond to it. I was previously unaware of Bethlehem’s unenviable history so maybe you could add ‘informative’ to any future descriptions regarding this site. Incidentally, he didn’t blame Princess Anne he merely described her as an ‘odd horsy woman’…. What’s the problem with that?

  90. Habbabkuk (La vita è bella)

    16 Feb, 2013 - 8:38 pm

    @ Craig :

    Craig, there’s something about your introductory post that puzzles me.

    It is a fact that Daniel Bethlehem took over as Principal Legal Adviser at the FCO in 2006, ie, well after the (2nd) Iraq war.

    Your post however gives the strong impression that Jack Straw replaced the Principal Legal Adviser JUST BEFORE the war started (because legal opinion in the FCO was that the war would be illegal) and appointed Bethlehem because he could be counted on to affirm the legality of that war.

    Was that just slightly careless drafting?

  91. Habbabkuk

    It is not intended to give that impression and indeed it does not say that. Starw’s attempt to remove Michael Wood came out at the Chilcott inquiry and was detailed on this sie (I expect you can find it in the search box). Bethlehem was appointed by Straw because he supported the Iraq War while all the internal candidates thought it illegal. Those are the salient facts. The precise relationship to the start date of the war is not relevant to them.

  92. Julian kavanagh

    It is scarcely original to describe Princess Anne as odd and horsey. I think that if you asked the general population to name an “odd horsey woman”, Princess Anne would be the overwhelming response.

    It is hardly a searing insult. You may be surprised to know I actually rather like her; if you read Chapter 2 of Murder in Samarkand you will find why.

  93. The war criminal who should be in the Hague said “We will also enshrine in law for the future the necessity of consulting parliament on military action.” – W hague

    So.. we can breath easy with regards Iran then, Mermaids and Unicorns Stuff

  94. Habbabkuk (La vita è bella)

    17 Feb, 2013 - 1:13 am

    All clear Craig!

    I think your lead-in post as well as your response to mine would have benefited from the judicious use of the pluperfect (eg, …was appointed because he HAD supported the Iraq war whereas the internal candidates HAD not…).

    Were Straw’s attempts to remove Michael Wood contemporaneous with the build-up to the war (I assume this was the case, but it’s not entirely clear textually)?

  95. Habbabkuk, 15 Feb, 8:50 pm:

    “During this period he plead for the UK at the International Court of Justice and the International Law of the Sea Tribunal. He also plead for Malaysia, Belgium and Israel at the International Court of Justice, for Turkey at the International Court for Human Rights and for the USA at the Iran-USA Claims Tribunal.”

    “Plead for” seems a bit odd. Would this be better translated to “he represented [parties xyz]”, or “he advocated on behalf of [xyz]”, or something else?

  96. ‘Stood up for’ would be my direct translation, Clark, but the first part of the sentence referred to ‘Heimatland’ a term without suitable translation, the nearest being Fatherland’ or ‘Vaterland’ respectively, but I won’t quibble with the overall rough translation of Habbakuk.

  97. Habbabkuk (La vita è bella!)

    24 Feb, 2013 - 5:01 pm

    @ Nevermind :

    Well, I don’t think my translation is all that rough actually. 3stood up for” might well be the direct translation, but it’s not the expression one would use for court proceedings (“he stood up for the UK at the ICJ”? – absurd!)

  98. Nevermind, thanks. I think that “advocated for” is probably the most suitable translation.

  99. あと1年は頑張って欲しかったけど、辞めて正解だったかもね。

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