Tag Archives: survivor

Israeli forces shot their own civilians, kibbutz survivor says

Yasmin Porat: her interview casts doubt on everything we’ve been told about the Hamas raids.

Israeli claims about Hamas atrocities in the treatment of hostages and other Israeli civilians during the raids that started the current Israel/Gaza conflict may have been disproved decisively by an interview with a survivor.

Worse still – for the Israelis, Yasmin Porat said Israeli civilians were “undoubtedly” killed by their own security forces when they arrived at the scene.

The interview has appeared on ‘X’ (formerly Twitter) – and has been translated by the Electronic Intifada:

Here it is, with a bit of preamble to provide context:

An Israeli woman who survived the Hamas assault on settlements near the Gaza boundary on 7 October says Israeli civilians were “undoubtedly” killed by their own security forces.

It happened when Israeli forces engaged in fierce gun battles with Palestinian fighters in Kibbutz Be’eri and fired indiscriminately at both the fighters and their Israeli prisoners.

“They eliminated everyone, including the hostages,” she told Israeli radio. “There was very, very heavy crossfire” and even tank shelling.

The woman, 44-year-old mother of three Yasmin Porat, said that prior to that, she and other civilians had been held by the Palestinians for several hours and treated “humanely.” She had fled the nearby “Nova” rave.

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A recording of her interview, from the radio program Haboker Hazeh (“This Morning”) hosted by Aryeh Golan on state broadcaster Kan, has been circulating on social media.

Yasmin Porat: For an hour they were banging – about 10 terrorists on the reinforced safe room. There were screams in Arabic and it was a very tense hour. And we felt great fear that’s indescribable. After an hour they managed to break in and they removed the four of us to a nearby house where there were already eight other additional hostages. We joined those eight and we were about 12 hostages with 40 terrorists that were guarding us. I’m keeping the story short.

Aryeh Golan: Did they abuse you?

Yasmin Porat: They did not abuse us. They treated us very humanely, meaning …

Aryeh Golan: Humanely? Really?

Yasmin Porat: Yes, by that I mean they guard us. They give us something to drink here and there. When they see we are nervous, they calm us down. It was very frightening but no one treated us violently. Luckily nothing happened to me like what I heard in the media.

Aryeh Golan: Horrible, horrific things occurred.

Yasmin Porat: True. But after two hours briefly at first there was no [Israeli] security force with us. We were the ones who called the police together with the abductors because the abductors wanted the police to arrive. Because their objective was to kidnap us to Gaza.

[SKIP OR CUT IN AUDIO]

Yasmin Porat: Meanwhile one of the terrorists decides to surrender, the terrorist I made a connection with. Over the course of those two hours I connected with some of the abductors, those that guarded the hostages.

Aryeh Golan: Yes

Yasmin Porat: And he decides to use me as a human shield. He decides to surrender. I am not aware of it in those moments it’s in retrospect. He starts to disrobe, he takes he calls to me and he starts to leave the house with me, under fire. At that time I yelled to the YAMAM [Israeli commandos] when we were already when they can hear me, to stop firing.

Aryeh Golan: Yes

Yasmin Porat: And then they hear me and stop firing. I see on the lawn, in the garden of the people from the kibbutz. There are five or six hostages lying on the ground outside, just like sheep to the slaughter, between the shooting of our [fighters] and the terrorists.

Aryeh Golan: The terrorists shot them?

Yasmin Porat: No, they were killed by the crossfire. Understand there was very, very heavy crossfire.

Aryeh Golan: So our forces may have shot them?

Yasmin Porat: Undoubtedly.

Aryeh Golan: When they tried to eliminate the abductors, Hamas?

Yasmin Porat: They eliminated everyone, including the hostages. Because there was very, very heavy crossfire. I was freed at approximately 5:30. The fighting apparently ended at 8:30. After insane crossfire, two tank shells were shot into the house. Its a small kibbutz house, nothing big. You saw it on the news.

Aryeh Golan: Yes

Yasmin Porat: Not a large place. And at that moment everyone was killed. There was quiet, except for one person limping, Hadas [Dagan], in the garden.

Aryeh Golan: How were they all killed?

Yasmin Porat: From the crossfire.

Aryeh Golan: Crossfire, so it could also be from our forces?

Yasmin Porat: Undoubtedly.

Aryeh Golan: Really?

Yasmin Porat: Thats what I believe.

Aryeh Golan: Oy it sounds so bad.

Yasmin Porat: Yes. And everyone died.

Aryeh Golan: And you, thanks to that terrorist who decided to give himself up …

Yasmin Porat: Exactly.

Aryeh Golan: And you survived and all the rest were killed there.

Yasmin Porat: Except for one other woman who survived, they found her later [trails off]. The person who dealt with the event checked her or something. They found her when she lifted her head, amongst all the bodies. And then, simply …

Aryeh Golan: And your partner, who was with you?

Yasmin Porat: Killed.

Aryeh Golan: He was killed too?

Yasmin Porat: Yes. Everyone was killed there. Just horrible.

Aryeh Golan: Have you returned to Kabri?

Yasmin Porat: I returned to Kabri and then the chaos started there.

Aryeh Golan: In the north?

Yasmin Porat: Yes. So now I’m a guest. I’m being hosted in a lovely way in Kibbutz Ein Harod. And I’m here for now.

Aryeh Golan: Youre in the [Jezreel] Valley now. Alright, Yasmin, you’ve undergone a horrific experience.

Yasmin Porat: True.

Aryeh Golan: You lost your partner, you saw people killed alongside you.

Yasmin Porat: And I …

Aryeh Golan: [INTERRUPTS] What happened to that terrorist who gave himself up?

Yasmin Porat: He is still arrested, and he was just called in for interrogation to help … You know, he will be interrogated about the accused. And sadly dozens more of my friends were killed because …

Aryeh Golan: [INTERRUPTS] Dozens of friends?

Yasmin Porat: Yes because its a community, the trance scene, we go to the same parties. It means that besides my partner, I knew dozens and hundreds [CUT OFF]

For a much more detailed article, visit the Electronic Intifada here.


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Dehumanising language helped make the Holocaust happen. Why is Suella Braverman using it?

I was going to do an article on this myself, but Maximilien Robespierre got here first:

Elevating this above the normal Tory cock-up is the fact that the Home Office demanded that Freedom from Torture take the video clip down from the social media, saying it was heavily edited and didn’t reflect the full exchange.

Here’s the response:

Do you think the extra material excised from the original video changed what Braverman said, in any way? I don’t!

Have YOU donated to my crowdfunding appeal, raising funds to fight false libel claims by TV celebrities who should know better? These court cases cost a lot of money so every penny will help ensure that wealth doesn’t beat justice.

https://www.crowdjustice.com/case/mike-sivier-libel-fight/


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Anti-Semitism debate: ‘The political right have sunk us into the Abyss’

The late Hajo Meyer – and his most well-documented words.

Here’s an excellent thread on the anti-Semitism debate and the mass attempt to trash the reputation of a deceased Jewish Holocaust survivor who was at Auschwitz, Hajo Meyer.

It’s written by the pseudonymous Kanjin Tor, who has long been a voice of reason on the social media.

https://twitter.com/xugla/status/1025320580235583494

https://twitter.com/xugla/status/1025320582919938048

https://twitter.com/xugla/status/1025320585671262209

In fact, 17 million human beings were exterminated in the Nazi Holocaust – six million of them Jewish.

The attack on Hajo Meyer by trash-talking media personalities (if they can be dignified with the title) diminishes not only what happened to the Jews, but belittles the persecution that befell all the groups that the Nazis victimised.

“Anti-Semitism” is just the first offence of which they should be accused. They deserve to be tarred and feathered.

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James O’Brien should lose his job over anti-Semitic description of Holocaust survivor

James O’Brien (left) questioned the credentials of a deceased Jewish Holocaust survivor in order to make a specious political point about Jeremy Corbyn (right).

I used to think LBC radio host James O’Brien was one of the good guys but his disrespect for a deceased Jewish survivor of the Nazi Holocaust is utterly unacceptable.

O’Brien was referring to the 2010 Holocaust Memorial Day event at which Hajo Meyer, a Jewish Holocaust victim who survived the Auschwitz concentration camp, attacked Israeli government behaviour towards Gaza, comparing it with that of the Nazis.

It seems the presenter considered such a comparison, by somebody who should know, to be unacceptable and he claimed Mr Meyer made his speech behind the “camouflage” of being a Holocaust survivor.

How utterly despicable.

For O’Brien to attack a man who is not only dead, and therefore unable to respond, is bad enough.

But to diminish the suffering Mr Meyer endured in life by claiming he was under “camouflage” is beyond the pale.

It is also, quite clearly, anti-Semitic: Denying the fact, scope, mechanisms (e.g. gas chambers) or intentionality of the genocide of the Jewish people at the hands of Nazi Germany and its supporters and accomplices during World War II (the Holocaust).

Has Mr O’Brien ever been forced to endure persecution because of his race, religion, skin colour, ethnic group or any other such distinguishing feature?

Has he ever been forced into a concentration camp, worked like an animal and starved nearly to death?

Has he ever had to live in fear of being murdered alongside a multitude of people like him?

No. He hasn’t.

But he took it on himself to insult the memory of a man who had, in order to score a cheap political point against Jeremy Corbyn, who has apologised for appearing at the event in which Mr Meyer made his speech, even though he was not responsible for its content.

And what did Mr O’Brien do, when he was challenged over his behaviour by a listener? Did he apologise?

Not a bit of it. See for yourself:

James said: “Get lost, seriously. You honestly think when you’ve got the leader of the Labour Party sharing a platform with people who compare Jews to Nazis, you think my vocabulary is the most interesting and important element of this story?

“You, pal, are the problem.You’re the reason why this country is on its knees. You are the reason why the nastiest, most vindictive Tory administration we’ve seen in decades is still hanging on to power.

“You are the reason why, because you’ve got a party led by a man who has the moral integrity of a Kit Kat and yet somehow has managed to persuade significant swathes of decent people that he speaks for decency.

“No he doesn’t, he’s a disgrace. And if the Labour Party was led by anybody else it would be 20 points ahead in the polls.”

Can you see any solid evidence to support his vile claims about Mr Meyer in that vicious rant?

Neither can I.

All I can see are ad hominem attacks and insults on a listener who is perfectly entitled to their opinion, and on the leader of the Labour Party.

This is behaviour that falls well below the standard expected of people in public life.

O’Brien should resign. Or he should be sacked.

You can contact LBC to complain here.

Source: James O’Brien’s Passionate Response When Listener Denies Labour Anti-Semitism – LBC

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Why is Corbyn apologising after an AUSCHWITZ SURVIVOR condemned Israel EIGHT YEARS AGO?

Perhaps this makes matters clearer: It turns out Hajo Meyer is the person who said an anti-Semite was no longer a person who hated Jews but a person who is hated by Jews. No wonder the Campaign Against Antisemitism is keen to besmirch his memory.

Of all the accusations by the fake “anti-Semitism” accusers, this has to be the lowest yet. Why has Jeremy Corbyn apologised?

It seems Mr Corbyn has been accused of anti-Semitism because he appeared at an event in 2010 when Hajo Meyer, a Jewish Holocaust victim who survived the Auschwitz concentration camp, repeatedly compared the behaviour of the Israeli government in Gaza to that of Nazi Germany.

It’s just This Writer’s opinion but, as a person who has witnessed the crimes of the Nazis first-hand, he should know!

To show how ridiculous the accusation is: The implication by the Campaign Against Antisemitism is that Mr Meyer was an anti-Semite. These people are accusing a Holocaust victim of anti-Semitism – or they would, if he hadn’t died in 2014.

The fact that this has been dredged up now raises a couple of questions.

Firstly, did the Campaign Against Antisemitism conduct any research into the feelings of the wider community of British Jews before making its claim? This is an event that happened eight years ago, so there has been plenty of time.

Why was no accusation made in 2010? It seems that would have been the appropriate time. Why has no objection been made until now? Is it because it is politically expedient to do so now?

The CAA has referred the party to the Equality and Human Rights Commission (EHRC), which has exhibited little interest, saying it will consider what action is needed – “if any”.

The CAA’s letter to the EHRC claims that Labour has created an atmosphere of discrimination against Jewish members and/or associates through years of failure to enforce its own rules. Which rules? Isn’t it strange that they never come out with any actual evidence?

So we find that Jeremy Corbyn has apologised for being present when a Jewish Holocaust survivor passed an opinion that he was perfectly entitled to hold – at an event eight years ago, to which (to the best of our knowledge) the wider Jewish community in the UK does not object.

He should not have done so. In fact, he should have told his accusers to clear off – in no uncertain terms. Until he actually does this, he will never be free of them.

Jeremy Corbyn has apologised for speaking at an event where the actions of Israel in Gaza were compared to the Nazis.

The Labour leader acknowledged he had appeared with people “whose views I completely reject” when he hosted a Holocaust Memorial Day event in 2010, while he was a backbench MP. He apologised for the “concerns and anxiety” it had caused.

The main talk at the event, called Never Again for Anyone – Auschwitz to Gaza, was given by Hajo Meyer, a Jewish survivor of the Auschwitz concentration camp. He repeatedly compared Israeli action in Gaza to the mass killing of Jewish people in the Holocaust.

Corbyn said: “The main speaker at this Holocaust Memorial Day meeting was a Jewish Auschwitz survivor. Views were expressed at the meeting which I do not accept or condone.

“In the past, in pursuit of justice for the Palestinian people and peace in Israel/Palestine, I have on occasion appeared on platforms with people whose views I completely reject. I apologise for the concerns and anxiety that this has caused.”

Source: Corbyn apologises over event where Israel was compared to Nazis | Politics | The Guardian

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Who will Grenfell Inquiry chair appoint to assess evidence from the RESIDENTS’ viewpoint?

Campaigners say a socioeconomic perspective can only come from somebody with experience and understanding of how communities like North Kensington operate [Image: AFP/Getty].


It is relatively easy to sympathise with Sir Martin Moore-Bick’s desire not to be seen as biased towards the residents of Grenfell Tower, in his inquiry into the circumstances of the fire that claimed at least 80 (cue derisory laughter) lives.

But if his inquiry is to be impartial, he must find somebody to sit on it who can provide insight into the interests of tower block residents who had little influence on the decisions that were made about their safety.

He needs a resident of another tower block.

Better still, he needs an unemployed tower block resident.

Not only would that provide good publicity for the inquiry, but it would be a fantastic opportunity for whoever was chosen. This Writer has no idea how much the members of a committee of inquiry are paid but my guess is that they don’t come cheap.

And if the chosen candidate makes a good fist of it, the experience could be life-changing.

But will Sir Martin have the wisdom to make such a choice?

If he doesn’t, then he’s the wrong choice to chair the inquiry after all and the heckles he has attracted will have been well-deserved.

The chairman of an inquiry into the deadly fire at Grenfell Tower has refused calls to allow a survivor of the disaster to be part of a team assessing evidence.

Retired judge Sir Martin Moore-Bick, who is leading the probe, acknowledged survivors’ concerns about the impartiality of the investigation, but said they could only provide evidence to the inquiry.

Issuing an opening statement at the Grand Connaught Rooms in central London, Sir Martin said: “To appoint someone as an assessor who has had direct involvement in the fire would risk undermining my impartiality in the eyes of others who are also deeply involved in the inquiry.”

Instead, Sir Martin, a former judge at the Court of Appeal, said he would approach candidates who were entirely separated from the disaster.

Read more: Grenfell Tower inquiry chairman refuses to let residents who survived fire help assess evidence


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Survivors of Grenfell Tower are trying to commit suicide. Why?

Grief: Firefighters found it hard to keep themselves together as they dealt with the tragedy at Grenfell Tower. How much worse would it have been for residents? [Image: PA].

It may come as scant surprise to you that people who survived the inferno at Grenfell Tower are so troubled by it – and its aftermath – that they are trying to end their own lives.

Survivors’ guilt is a well-documented phenomenon.

But there is also the issue of the treatment these people received after the tragedy – from the public services that are supposed to exist to help victims of such terrible events.

Can anyone say Kensington and Chelsea Borough Council has acted well in this matter? I can’t.

Claiming a network of support is available does not amount to a resounding show of succour in these people’s time of need.

At least 20 survivors and witnesses of the Grenfell Tower fire have attempted suicide, a support network has said.

Silence of Suicide founder Yvette Greenway told the BBC’s Victoria Derbyshire programme the number was based on conversations with residents.

Campaign group Justice4Grenfell said those working with survivors had heard of 20 suicide attempts, but the BBC has been unable to verify the figure.

A network of support is available, Kensington and Chelsea Council said.

Source: Grenfell Tower: ‘Twenty suicide attempts’ since fire – BBC News


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Two elements led to abuse of Grenfell survivors over seaside trips: JEALOUSY and STUPIDITY

Grief: Mourners at a vigil for the victims of the Grenfell fire [Image: Getty Images].

Everybody in the UK should be ashamed of the small-minded creeps who have showered abuse on survivors of the Grenfell Tower fire, just because they have been offered free seaside trips to help recover.

It seems the abusers, who often refer to incidents that have harmed them, have deliberately ignored the main fact of the Grenfell disaster:

The residents of Grenfell Tower had absolutely no control over the conditions that led to the inferno.

In fact, they had spent years trying to convince the authorities of the danger presented by the unsafe cladding that turned the tower into an inferno.

Were any of the abusers similarly powerless in the situations they describe? It seems doubtful.

Personally, I agree with Ben, a friend of a friend on Facebook, who wrote:

“Let me guess

“‘I wish my kids got free trips to the seaside!’

“Do you wish your kids were trapped in a burning building, with screaming, dying people and animals in every direction? Do you wish their lungs would fill with smoke? Do you wish they would witness people running past them on fire? That Mum, or their mate Billy, or Spot the cat would die and your child’s last memory of them would be them screaming in agony and possibly begging to be killed?

“Thought not.

“Now shut the f— up.

“Signed, a bloke who lost most of his possessions in a house fire but still doesn’t think he has suffered half as much as these kids.”

Families who survived the Grenfell Tower inferno have become the target of vile online abuse after they were offered free trips to the seaside.

People left homeless in the wake of the huge fire which ripped through the 24-storey tower block in west London leaving 80 people dead have been offered days out and trips away to help them recover from the horror.

However, online trolls slammed the kind gesture, organised by Facebook group, Grenfell Tower Holiday appeal.

One person wrote on Twitter: “Right.. I’m burning my house down tonight. I’m in need of a holiday and new house and even some cash.”

Another added: “Why are the Grenfell tower residents getting a free holiday? Who’s paying? I don’t recall any of the Somerset flood victims getting anything.”

One man said: “#grenfell I didn’t get a free holiday when I had a home fire. This is getting totally out of hand.”

Another woman wrote: “Next door’s dog has just killed one of my hens and I’m heartbroken. Can I go? I need cheering up.”

It came as a survivor of the blaze, known only as Lilian, told the BBC that former residents now felt “scared” to admit they were from the tower because of the abuse people have suffered.

Source: Grenfell Tower survivors bombarded with vile abuse after being offered free holidays | London Evening Standard


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New judge appointed for child abuse inquiry – third time lucky?

Serious task: New Zealand High Court Judge Lowell Goddard has been appointed as the third chair of the inquiry into historical child sex abuse.

Serious task: New Zealand High Court Judge Lowell Goddard has been appointed as the third chair of the inquiry into historical child sex abuse.

Did anybody notice this in the mainstream media? It was reported, but not very strongly.

New Zealand High Court judge Lowell Goddard has been appointed as the third chair of Theresa May’s much-aborted inquiry into historical child sex abuse in the United Kingdom.

She has told the Commons Home Affairs select committee she wants to have the troubled inquiry “up and running” by early April and would aim to revisit past wrongs, clarify what happened and ensure children were protected from sexual abuse.

She also said she intended for the inquiry, which she has been told could take three to four years, to have a “truth and reconciliation” element to it, which would allow survivors to speak about their experiences in private if necessary – as well as an investigative function.

And she said she has no links to the establishment, telling MPs: “We don’t have such a thing in my country.” This last claim may be suspect!

Concerns have been raised about her record. According to one site, while heading the NZ Independent Police Conduct Authority, Justice Goddard concealed a number of serious complaints against police and, while Deputy Solicitor General, refused to release evidence that former judge Michael Lance was guilty of perverting justice in a police prosecution of his son Simon’s business partner, claiming it was not in the public interest to allow the prosecution.

But she dismissed allegations made by New Zealand bloggers by pointing out that her prime accuser has been officially certified a “vexatious litigant” and stressing that her record on child abuse included passing the longest sentence in New Zealand judicial history on a man who abused and murdered two girls.

So that’s all right then. Is it?

One of her first moves has been to end Theresa May’s experiment to put child abuse survivors on the panel. She said: “There are inherent risks in having people with personal experience of abuse as members of an impartial and independent panel.”

Blogger David Hencke, who has far more experience in these subjects than Yr Obdt Srvt, commented: “Frankly the row and bitter campaign by some organisations, l am afraid like the Survivors Alliance, against people appointed to the panel has ended in excluding survivors voices in the writing of the report. They have shot themselves in the foot.

“There will obviously be some appointed to an advisory panel, but no one should kid themselves that they will have the same influence as a member of the panel. It will be up to the judge to decide how often and how much they will be consulted but up to her and her QC adviser, Ben Emmerson, to decide what  will appear in the report.

“A radical experiment in setting up an inquiry to deal with one of the nastiest and most persistent blots in British public life – the exploitation of children by paedophiles – has been killed  with the help of the very people who suffered that fate.” [bolding mine]

Survivors will still be able to speak to the inquiry and also to the new People’s Tribunal now in the process of being set up, which has survivors on its steering committee.

Is this a good start – or another false one?

Follow me on Twitter: @MidWalesMike

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