Monday, November 28, 2016

  • Monday, November 28, 2016
  • Elder of Ziyon

In a recent post on the “Pine libel,” EoZ focused on a commentary by the notorious antisemite Gilad Atzmon who described the forest fires raging in many parts of Israel last week as nature’s revenge against evil Zionist efforts “to make Palestine look like Europe” by planting supposedly non-native pine trees. Well, as EoZ showed, pines are native to the region – which kind of ruins Atzmon’s triumphant conclusion: “Like the pine tree, Zionism, Israel and the Israeli are foreign to the region.”
But Atzmon’s ignorant screed wasn’t even original: the claim that Zionists planted pines “to make Palestine look like Europe” is rather popular among anti-Israel activists, and can e.g. also be found in a lengthy Electronic Intifada (EI) article from 2010, where Max Blumenthal gloated about the devastating Carmel fire: “the nonindigenous trees of the JNF were poorly suited to the environment in Palestine” and “go up like tinder in the dry heat.” Inevitably, Blumenthal later recycled the EI article for “Goliath,” his book-length demonization of Israel.  

With the fires raging in Israel last week, Ali Abunimah promptly promoted Blumenthal’s 2010 article again, emphasizing the claim that the “Zionist regime planted forests to erase traces of Palestinians.”

In another tweet, Abunimah opined that “Israel’s use of ‘forest planting’ of ill-suitied[sic!] tree species to conquer Palestinian land is root cause of the fires.” He linked to a JTA article which he apparently hadn’t really read: the article didn’t say that Israel had planted “ill-suited tree species,” but on the contrary quoted the JNF’s director of forest management as praising “these pioneering pines” for doing “a wonderful job for the first generation.” The article also explicitly mentioned the “Aleppo pine, also known as the Jerusalem pine” – so Abunimah, who after all claims to be Palestinian, could have noticed that the pine wasn’t named for a European location…

But Abunimah insisted that “Fires in ‘Israel’ are caused by planting of non-native pines by European settlers and disastrous Zionist land mismanagement;” and he even mocked Jack Mendel, a journalist for the British Jewish News: “‘journalist’ @mendelpol thinks I made up the facts about Zionist colonizer filling Palestine with highly flammable non native pines.”

Well, if Abunimah had bothered to read the JTA article he linked to so helpfully, he would know that his “non-native pines” are named after the now so unfortunate Syrian town of Aleppo, and he could actually also have learned something about “land mismanagement”:

“For centuries the area was covered in a patchwork of squat, dense low-lying forest, especially in the native woodland areas of the Carmel, Galilee and the Judean hills. But by the time the early Zionist settlers arrived, much of the forestland had been depleted, used over the years as firewood, building material, grazing land for goats and sheep, and even train tracks in the Ottoman era.”

Let me also add that I don’t think anyone would ever accuse Abunimah of making up facts – his record is clear: he’s always making up lies about the “Zionist colonizer.” As it happens, this time the lies he made up exposed his lack of knowledge about the historic Palestine that he claims as his homeland.

But since Abunimah is the son of a high-ranking Jordanian diplomat and presumably sometimes goes to visit his family in Jordan, I have a suggestion: next time he visits, he could plan a family excursion to the Dibeen Forest Reserve, a “pristine pine-oak habitat” which is said to feature “Aleppo pines” that “are some of the oldest and largest in the Kingdom.” According to one travel guide, it’s rather small but nevertheless “a nice destination for peace and quiet” – how about it, Ali Abunimah? To get into the mood, you could check out the relevant page at “Magic Jordan,” which notes that Dibeen forest includes the “indigenous Aleppo pine” and “is representative of the wilderness that once covered a large part of north-western Jordan.”

Admittedly, the site’s photo gallery offers some views of the reserve that look just like those places in Israel that monstrously evil Zionists transformed from barren hills to “little Switzerlands” – and it’s a depressing thought that some people might wish for it all to burn down just because it doesn’t fit their ignorant ideals of a pristinely barren Palestine.

We have lots of ideas, but we need more resources to be even more effective. Please donate today to help get the message out and to help defend Israel.


EoZTV Podcast

Podcast URL

Subscribe in podnovaSubscribe with FeedlyAdd to netvibes
addtomyyahoo4Subscribe with SubToMe

search eoz





For $18 donation

Sample Text

EoZ's Most Popular Posts in recent years


Elder of Ziyon - حـكـيـم صـهـيـون

This blog may be a labor of love for me, but it takes a lot of effort, time and money. For over 14 years and 30,000 articles I have been providing accurate, original news that would have remained unnoticed. I've written hundreds of scoops and sometimes my reporting ends up making a real difference. I appreciate any donations you can give to keep this blog going.


Donate to fight for Israel!

Monthly subscription:
Payment options

One time donation:

subscribe via email

Follow EoZ on Twitter!

Interesting Blogs


#PayForSlay Abbas liar Academic fraud administrivia al-Qaeda algeria Alice Walker American Jews AmericanZionism Amnesty analysis anti-semitism anti-Zionism antisemitism apartheid Arab antisemitism arab refugees Arafat archaeology Ari Fuld art Ashrawi ASHREI B'tselem bahrain Balfour bbc BDS BDSFail Bedouin Beitunia beoz Bernie Sanders Biden history Birthright book review Brant Rosen breaking the silence Campus antisemitism Cardozo cartoon of the day Chakindas Chanukah Christians circumcision Clark Kent coexistence Comix Community Standards conspiracy theories COVID-19 Cyprus Daled Amos Daphne Anson David Applebaum Davis report DCI-P Divest This double standards Egypt Elder gets results ElderToons Electronic Intifada Ellen Horowitz Embassy EoZ Trump symposium eoz-symposium EoZNews eoztv Erekat Erekat lung transplant EU Euro-Mid Observer European antisemitism Facebook Facebook jail Fake Civilians 2014 Fake Civilians 2019 Farrakhan Fatah featured Features fisking flotilla Forest Rain Forward free gaza freedom of press palestinian style future martyr Gary Spedding gaza Gaza Platform George Galloway George Soros German Jewry Ghassan Daghlas gideon levy gilad shalit gisha Goldstone Report Good news Grapel Guardian guest post gunness Haaretz Hadassah hamas Hamas war crimes Hananya Naftali hasbara Hasby 2014 Hasby 2016 Hasby 2018 hate speech Hebron helen thomas hezbollah history Hizballah Holocaust Holocaust denial honor killing HRW Human Rights Humanitarian crisis humor Hypocrisy ICRC IDF IfNotNow IJ Benjamin Ilan Pappe Ilhan Omar impossible peace incitement indigenous Indonesia infographic international law interview intransigence iran Iraq Islamic Judeophobia Islamism Israel Loves America Israeli culture Israeli high-tech J Street jabalya James Zogby jeremy bowen Jerusalem jewish fiction Jewish Voice for Peace jihad jimmy carter Joe Biden John Kerry jokes jonathan cook Jordan Joseph Massad Juan Cole Judaism Judea-Samaria Judean Rose Judith Butler Kairos Karl Vick Keith Ellison ken roth khalid amayreh Khaybar Know How to Answer Lebanon leftists Linda Sarsour Linkdump lumish mahmoud zahar Mairav Zonszein Malaysia Marc Lamont Hill Marjorie Taylor Greene max blumenthal Mazen Adi McGraw-Hill media bias Methodist Michael Lynk Michael Ross Miftah Missionaries moderate Islam Mohammed Assaf Mondoweiss moonbats Morocco Mudar Zahran music Muslim Brotherhood Naftali Bennett Nakba Nan Greer Nation of Islam Natural gas Nazi Netanyahu News nftp NGO Nick Cannon NIF Noah Phillips norpac NSU Matrix NYT Occupation offbeat olive oil Omar Barghouti Omri Boehm Only in Israel Opinion oxfam PA corruption PalArab lies Palestine Papers pallywood pchr PCUSA Peace Now Peter Beinart Petra MB philosophy poetry Poland poll Poster Preoccupied Prisoners propaganda Proud to be Zionist Puar Purim purimshpiel Putin Qaradawi Qassam calendar Quora Rafah Ray Hanania real liberals RealJerusalemStreets reference Reuters Richard Falk Richard Landes Richard Silverstein Right of return Rivkah Lambert Adler Robert Werdine rogel alpher roger cohen roger waters Rutgers Saeb Erekat Sarah Schulman Saudi Arabia saudi vice self-death self-death palestinians Seth Rogen settlements sex crimes SFSU shechita sheikh tamimi Shelly Yachimovich Shujaiyeh Simchat Torah Simona Sharoni SodaStream South Africa Sovereignty Speech stamps Superman Syria Tarabin Temple Mount Terrorism This is Zionism Thomas Friedman Tlaib TOI Tomer Ilan Trump Trump Lame Duck Test Tunisia Turkey UAE Accord UCI UK UN UNDP unesco unhrc UNICEF United Arab Emirates Unity unrwa UNRWA hate unrwa reports UNRWA-USA unwra vaccination Varda Vic Rosenthal Washington wikileaks Winstanley work accident X-washing Y. Ben-David Yemen YMikarov zahran Ziesel zionist attack zoo Zionophobia Ziophobia Zvi

Best posts of the past 6 months


A new, better definition of antisemitism

Blog Archive