Anti-Semitism, Corruption, and the Death of Alberto Nisman

The death—most likely murder—of Alberto Nisman, the Argentinian prosecutor investigating the 1994 bombing of Buenos Aires’s AMIA Jewish center, takes its place within a long history of anti-Semitism and political corruption in Argentina. Ben Cohen writes:

It’s important to bear three indisputable truths in mind: First, no one has ever been convicted for the [1992] Israeli embassy bombing. Second, no one has ever been convicted for the AMIA bombing. Third, the most tangible outcome of this entire process has been the suspicious death of the one man who dedicated himself to unraveling these grotesque mysteries: Alberto Nisman, the special prosecutor; Alberto Nisman, the Jew. . . . .

From the moment Nisman’s body was discovered, the inquiry into his death faithfully reflected the judicial sham that had plagued the actual AMIA investigation. At first, the authorities insinuated that Nisman had shot himself in the temple. A few days later, it was noted that the fatal bullet had entered above and behind his ear—a strange method, indeed, to end one’s own life with a gun. . . .

These basic errors—whether caused by incompetence, design, or a mixture of the two—were compounded by [President Cristina] Kirchner’s own statements. Increasingly sounding like an angst-ridden protagonist in a telenovela, the president initially declared that Nisman had probably committed suicide. She also breathlessly accused Nisman of working at the behest of foreign powers, stating that during a trip he made to Europe a few weeks before he died, he’d received precise instructions on how to proceed with the accusations against her. Then, with a remarkable lack of self-awareness, Kirchner changed her mind; Nisman’s death, she now said, was probably a murder. . . .

“Which Nisman do I go with?” Kirchner herself asked in early March, implying that because the special prosecutor had once praised her remarks about AMIA before the United Nations, there was no basis for his later accusations against her. For good measure, Kirchner then offered up the outlines of a conspiracy theory: why, she asked, “does the state of Israel demand [justice] for AMIA, and not for the blowing up of their own embassy?” She offered no further explanation; in the Kirchnerite universe, it is enough to encourage speculation about Israel’s agenda and allow people to draw their own malign conclusions.

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Read more at Commentary

More about: Alberto Nisman, AMIA bombing, Anti-Semitism, Argentina, Cristina Kirchner, Hizballah, Politics & Current Affairs

The Arab Press Blames Iran Rather Than Israel for Gaza’s Woes

Following the fighting between Israel and Islamic Jihad over the weekend, many journalists and commentators in Bahrain, the United Arab Emirates, and Saudi Arabia didn’t rush to condemn the Jewish state. Instead, as the translators at the Middle East Media Research Institute (MEMRI) note, they criticized the terrorist group for “operating in service of Iranian interests and thus inflicting suffering on the Gaza Strip’s residents.” One Saudi intellectual, Turki al-Hamad, wrote the following on Twitter:

It is apparent that, if at one time any confrontation between Israel and the Palestinian organizations would attract world and Arab attention and provoke a wave of anger [against Israel], today it does not shock most Arabs and most of the world’s [countries]. Furthermore, even a sense of human solidarity [with the Palestinians] has become rare and embarrassing, raising the question, “Why [is this happening] and who is to blame?”

I believe that the main reason is the lack of confidence in all the Palestinian leaders. . . . From the Arabs’ and the world’s perspective, it is already clear that these leaders are manipulating the [Palestinian] cause out of self-interest and diplomatic, economic, or even personal motives, and that the Palestinian issue is completely unconnected to this. The Palestinian cause has become a bargaining chip in the hands of these and other organizations and states headed by the [Iranian] ayatollah regime.

A, article in a major Arabic-language newspaper took a similar approach:

In a lengthy front-page report on August 7, the London-based UAE daily Al-Arab criticized Islamic Jihad, writing that “Gaza again became an arena for the settling of accounts between Iran and Israel, while the Palestinian citizens are the ones paying the price.” It added that Iran does not want to confront Israel directly for its bombings in Syria and its attacks on Iranian scientists and nuclear facilities.

“The war in Gaza is not the first, nor will it be the last. But it proves . . . that Iran is exploiting Gaza as it exploits Lebanon, in order to strengthen its hand in negotiations with the West. We all know that Iran hasn’t fired a single bullet at Israel, and it also will not do this to defend Gaza or Lebanon.”

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Read more at MEMRI

More about: Gaza Strip, Iran, Islamic Jihad, Israel-Arab relations, Persian Gulf