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The IRB should block Israel

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The IRB should block Israel

Postby Rowan » Fri, 11 Jul 2014, 16:58

Israel is carrying out ethnic cleansing and colonisation in Palestine, has committed gross violations of human rights against the native population, including state terrorism, mass murder, destruction of vital infrastructure, and mass incarceration, had built a giant wall within Palestinian territory, creating an Apartheid state, and is imposing enforced third world poverty through its control of resources within Palestine and its blockading of humanitarian aid. Surely, if South Africa was prevented from attending the first two World Cups because of the Apartheid system, and Fiji has been barred from including military personnel in its team, Israel should not be free to compete in international rugby under these circumstances.

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Re: The IRB should block Israel

Postby iul » Fri, 11 Jul 2014, 17:08

If the EU or UN or other international organizations aren't doing anything about it what makes you think some sports organization will?

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Re: The IRB should block Israel

Postby Rowan » Fri, 11 Jul 2014, 17:40

The EU and its member nations have certainly condemned Israel on countless occasions, as has the UN - though inevitably to be vetoed by the US. In fact, the US has vetoed scores of UN resolutions against Israel since 1972 alone. I read in Turkish, French and Spanish and have seen that the major dailies of these countries have been scathing in their criticism of Israel also, which is in contrast to mainstream American news, plus the BBC, which continue to blame the resistance and lie to the public about everything. However, I have not said the IRB will block Israel. I have said they should, just as I have suggested they should do various other things in the interests of developing international rugby. That by no means suggests I think they actually will. I'm not that naive. In fact, I agree with your sentiments here. It is highly, highly unlikely the IRB will take a moral stance against these gross violations of human rights while organisations such as FIFA, UEFA and FIBA fail to. It is, nonetheless, shocking to see what is going on in Palestine right now. :cry:
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Re: The IRB should block Israel

Postby amz » Sat, 12 Jul 2014, 15:01

I don't think it's IRB job. What shocks me is Hamas/Hizballah got so much support from local population; I'd link last events with lack of funding Hamas from Iran, they must be pissed about Hamas involvement in Syria.

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Re: The IRB should block Israel

Postby Rowan » Sat, 12 Jul 2014, 16:57

Hamas and Hizbullah were both formed in direct response to Israeli state terrorism, the latter following the massacre of Palestinian refugess in Lebanon in 1982. The latest invasion of Palestine, which has so far killed around 130 people, mostly civilians, has been on Israel's agenda ever since Hamas and Fatah united. The EU welcomed this, but Israel was incensed, and this is the result. Meanwhile, protests are being staged all around the world in response to this latest act of aggression against a civilian population. It is my personal view that Israel should not be permitted to compete in international sport under these circumstances.
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Re: The IRB should block Israel

Postby lelopride » Sat, 12 Jul 2014, 20:20

I think IRB should ban Turkey for the Genocide of Armenians.

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Re: The IRB should block Israel

Postby Rowan » Sat, 12 Jul 2014, 20:40

Bit late. If it were occurring today - yes. & we would also have to ban Britain for countless crimes of genocide and ethnic cleansing. But these horrendous crimes against humanity are not occurring here today. They are occurring in Palestine - ethnic cleansing, oppression, torture, mass incarceration, Apartheid and denial of basic human rights. In the past few days alone Israili bombs and missiles have slaughtered over a 100 Palestinian civilians, notably women and children. That is what the people of today have a moral obligation to deal with.
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Re: The IRB should block Israel

Postby lelopride » Sat, 12 Jul 2014, 20:43

Perhaps " ethnic cleansing, oppression, torture, mass incarceration, Apartheid and denial of basic human rights" are occurring today because they were not addressed properly in the past. There is no such thing as late justice.

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Re: The IRB should block Israel

Postby Rowan » Sat, 12 Jul 2014, 21:05

I agree with you there, but I think unresolved issues from the past need to be addressed within the political arena. Atrocities occurring in the present, however, need to be confronted head-on by the community at large. Demonstrations against unprovoked Israeli aggression and mass murder of civilians were held all over the world this week.
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Re: The IRB should block Israel

Postby lelopride » Sat, 12 Jul 2014, 21:59

Its much more complicated than that. I applaud your enthusiasm about the importance of human rights; however, you are not making much sense here. The only effective way to stop ongoing mass atrocities is through political arena given that there is sufficient political will (which is absent in the case of Israeli-Palestinian conflict). Sure, in theory mass demonstrations can contribute to the mobilisation of political will due to the pressure on authorities in a given country. But in the case of Israeli-Palestinian conflict international community is highly divided and frankly I don't see how current mass demonstrations are going to effect the decision making in Israel.

Demonstrations against unprovoked Israeli aggression and mass murder of civilians were held all over the world this week


This is your subjective and very debatable opinion. Take example of France. If you ask french Algerians or Morrocans, who you probably saw protesting in France, they most likely will support Palestine. If you ask French or Jewish residents of Paris than they will probably support Israel.

I have a question for you. Who should we ban from rugby over current Ukrainian conflict. Russia or Ukraine? or maybe EU and US? More people died in Ukraine's recent conflict than in the recent developments in Israel-Palestine.

One thing I would strongly urge anybody is to differentiate sport from politics as much as possible.

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Re: The IRB should block Israel

Postby 4N » Sun, 13 Jul 2014, 05:05

I don't like the idea of mixing politics and sport. A sport with rugby's ethos especially can help to bridge divides. The Georgian and Russian rugby lads were said to remain friendly throughout their conflict, for example. And speaking of Russia and other rogue governments like Iran, China, and as rightly pointed out even Turkey, why should Israel be singled out? Should we talk about women's issues in Iran or the treatment of homosexuals in Uganda when discussing their rugby teams? I think not.

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Re: The IRB should block Israel

Postby Sables4EVA » Sun, 13 Jul 2014, 05:47

Rowan, you attack the British for atrocities in the past but speaking from experience, the other European nations did a lot more damage.

The Spanish genocide and destruction of South American people and culture, the Portuguese did much the same in America too and in Africa they destroyed as much infrastructure as possible before getting kicked out of Africa (in one case the sewers in Maputo were flooded with concrete to make them unusable for decades.). The Belgians and Dutch also left legacies in Africa and Asia and most of the French former colonies in Africa are still struggling decades after independence.

The British were no angels, but at least they left a solid infrastructure, tried as best they could to provide education and health. they have been paying morally and financially for their colonial past for a long time now, a lot more than the other former European powers.

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Re: The IRB should block Israel

Postby 4N » Sun, 13 Jul 2014, 06:01

Yep, reading up on the Belgian Congo or the early German period in Namibia is very sad indeed. And there isn't the same chronicling of the thousand years of Arab slavery and exploitation in East Africa (I think Rowan mentioned being in Zanzibar recently which was their chief slave depot) but it certainly was no less brutal.

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Re: The IRB should block Israel

Postby Rowan » Sun, 13 Jul 2014, 06:11

Leopride, I actually participated in anti-Springbok tours in my youth. Sporting bans helped bring an end to Apartheid. The situation in Israel has been widely compared to Apartheid, with a native population living in an open air prison, most of their land stolen away from them, collective punishment including frequent bombings of civilian areas, mass incarceration, total lack of freedom to travel within their own environs, and scant resources due to blockage of humanitarian aid.

Who is to blame in the Ukraine? America promised it would not expand NATO into Eastern Europe after the end of the Cold War. They have since expanded NATO into Eastern Europe, right up to Russia's borders, with Ukraine, the largest of the former Soviet federations in Eastern Europe, clearly their next target. so I blame America for that conflict.

4N, there is no other situation in the world than can be remotely compared to this - oppression of a native people by a brutal colonising force. The argument about not mixing politics and sport was popular among the pro-Springbok tour brigade in my youth.

Sables, I disagree with you on that point. In Kenya, just as an example, the British kept the locals in hundreds of concentration camps, killing tens of thousands, perhaps hundreds of thousands, killing, torturing, raping, castrating, otherwise mutilating, sticking scorpions, knives, and beer bottles into women's vaginas, making women run around stark naked with buckets of shit on their head, forcing them to eat that shit. They hunted them down, dragged them behind cars till they disintegrated, they killed women's children in front of them, they starved them . . . All this, in the name of 'civilization and Christianity,' occurred not in ancient history but in the reign of the current Queen of England, and even while the Nuremberg trials were going on in Europe. Why didn't the British care? Quite clearly because Kenyans are black. This is the truth about the British Empire. They did the same elsewhere. While the Spanish and Portuguese did eventually integrate with the native populations, hybridizing so that Latin Americans today are invariably of mixed race and all those countries have produced presidents that were at least part native, Britain simply went about reducing native populations to a tiny minority (Maori were down to 15,000 by the end of the wars with the British), and then disenfranchising them with this marvellously convenient concept called 'democracy' - majority rule. Unsurprisingly, ethnic minorities in former British colonies still find themselves firmly rooted to the bottom of the socio-economic scale.
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Re: The IRB should block Israel

Postby 4N » Sun, 13 Jul 2014, 06:18

No other situation in the world compares to Israel/Palestine? Pure hyperbole. I can think of dozens of historical and current situations that mirror the conflict. China in East Turkestan or Indonesia in West Papua immediately off the top of my head. And you're worldly enough to know as much. Shame you have to resort to such dishonesty.

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Re: The IRB should block Israel

Postby Rowan » Sun, 13 Jul 2014, 06:27

I am well aware of what the indonesians have done, including genocide of both suspected communists and Timorese with American, British and Australasian support, and also about the plight of the Uighur Turks in Eastern China, whose rights as Muslims have been oppressed. But the former is not ongoing, and the latter is not remotely on the same scale as the ethnic cleansing of Palestine, which is more along the lines of European colonization of the Americas and Australasia. Israel kills, on average, one child every three days, almost 1500 since 2000 alone, while thousands more have been incarcerated without access to legal defence.
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Re: The IRB should block Israel

Postby Sables4EVA » Sun, 13 Jul 2014, 06:34

4N, The Arabs did a lot of damage to East and South Eastern Africa, indiscriminate pillaging of villages for slaves and supplies and taking as much gold as they could pull out of the ground. One of the reasons the first Europeans into those areas were not well received, even though they were missionaries and not interested in material things.

Rowan, where are your proofs of what happened in Kenya. If this had happened there would have been an outcry when Kenya became independent and as African leaders love to bash the UK to promote themselves in their constituents eyes, I cannot see how this could be hushed up.

I live in Africa and I have seen the results of many atrocities, most have happened AFTER independence from colonial powers. You fail to understand tribalism in Africa and how it affects everyday life.

Can we discuss the massacre of Greeks slaughtered or enslaved in the 1800s on the island of Chios? How about the subjugation of the native people in the Horn of Africa when the Ottoman Empire ruled there? How about the Zulu empires brutal reign in Southern Africa?

History is full of atrocities like this and no one country can say they dont have some unethical blood on their hands, the past is the past, instead of whipping up hatred which would lead to more innocent blood spilled, we need to learn from the past, try not to let it happen again and look to the future.

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Re: The IRB should block Israel

Postby Rowan » Sun, 13 Jul 2014, 06:41

Precisely, Sables. Like everyone else, you're talking about historical atrocities. I only wish we could go back and punish the perpetrators more. But what I am talking about is occurring now. Of course if the Armenian genocide were underway as we speak I'd be the first to call for Turkey to be banned from all sporting competition. That's precisely my point.

On Kenya, I am currently reading Caroline Elkin's Pulitzer Prize-winning account of white rule in that country 'Britain's Gulag.' The BBC even made a documentary about it (I posted it on Matagaro's 'Terrorism in Kenya thread), though that barely scratched the surface. Elkin's book, the findings of which are not disputed even in Britain itself, is not the only one I've read on this topic, and all have much the same thing to say.
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Re: The IRB should block Israel

Postby Sables4EVA » Sun, 13 Jul 2014, 07:16

I will try and find the book and read it.

I have a feeling you and I are not so far apart, Rowan, we are just coming from different directions.

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Re: The IRB should block Israel

Postby Rowan » Sun, 13 Jul 2014, 07:20

:thumbup: I picked my copy up in Zanzibar, but if you can't find it in Zimbabwe, I'm sure you'd be able to order it over Amazon. Another good read is John Newsinger's The Blood Never Dried, which chronicles similar atrocities throughout the British Empire, including Zimbabwe. Modelled on Howard Zinn's People's History of America, which has become required reading in schools throughout much of the US, Newsinger's contribution sadly never had quite the same impact in Britain. But there are many other good books that cover these issues in the individual countries separately. Meanwhile, for the current situation in Israel, I'd highly recommend Ilan Pape's 'Ethnic Cleansing of Palestine' and other books by the same author. Pape is, of course, Israeli himself.
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Re: The IRB should block Israel

Postby iul » Sun, 13 Jul 2014, 07:33

The Belgians were the absolute best at being the worst colonizers.

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Re: The IRB should block Israel

Postby lelopride » Sun, 13 Jul 2014, 07:44

Rowan wrote:Leopride, I actually participated in anti-Springbok tours in my youth. Sporting bans helped bring an end to Apartheid. The situation in Israel has been widely compared to Apartheid, with a native population living in an open air prison, most of their land stolen away from them, collective punishment including frequent bombings of civilian areas, mass incarceration, total lack of freedom to travel within their own environs, and scant resources due to blockage of humanitarian aid.

Who is to blame in the Ukraine? America promised it would not expand NATO into Eastern Europe after the end of the Cold War. They have since expanded NATO into Eastern Europe, right up to Russia's borders, with Ukraine, the largest of the former Soviet federations in Eastern Europe, clearly their next target. so I blame America for that conflict.



Sporting bans are the tip of the iceberg. Its like saying-because US olympic team did not go to 1980 Moscow Olympics USSR got disintegrated. Obviously the causes for disintegration of USSR and end of apartheid are much deeper than sporting bans.

You did not answer my question.I did not ask who do you blame over Ukrainian crisis, I asked who should we ban. So according to you, IRB should ban US rugby team over Ukrainian crisis? Lots of people are dying in Ukraine...

Just so you know, there is no single official document signed that legally prohibited NATO from advancing to the East. You are repeating Russian myth from RT for explaining their abysmal diplomatic and political negotiation skills at that time. Frankly speaking USSR lost the war (cold war was still a war) and they could not dictate to NATO where to expand; moreover, they could not be such fools to believe the word of certain western diplomat when national interests are at stake. Mind that, I do agree with your implications that we have entered second round of Russia vs West confrontation. Its not a secret I think that those concerned in the "west" want Vladivastok to become truly European town. :D

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Re: The IRB should block Israel

Postby Canalina » Sun, 13 Jul 2014, 08:23

I agree that Israel's behavior is unacceptably arrogant and violent, even if partially provoked. I don't know if a sporting ban would have some effects on that behavior, I suppose not but I'm not sure. Just a thing, not completely related with the discussion, I can't understand: why muslims are so sensible to the Israeli/Palestine drama while they seem ignoring many other dramas occurring or occurred in the area. Why there never were a solid form of rebellion against the obtuse dictator Saddam Hussein while a fanatic rebellion with several suicide-bombers erupted when the americans (that, at least, freed the country from Saddam and organized free elections) take the power? Why there were never public demonstrations in the arab world against the talibans, running a dictatorship in Afghanistan? Why there were not protests against the so many auto-bombs in Iraq, that in these very last years made so many thousands of dead and wounded between the local population in the shia/sunni feud? Why no protests about the recent massacres in Syria? Why no about the crazy acts of Boko Haram or other muslim terrorists around the globe?
My point is: I hate the israeli "bully" and criminal acts against Palestine (moreover the occupation of palestinian lands, while the bombing of these days could be seen as a very brutal respond to the 3 boys' killing and the missiles launching), but I have the feeling that muslim people hate Israel mostly because its different religion (and, yes, because of its military overpower), while they are much more tolerant (or even ignoring) when a criminal act is ran by muslim states of muslim factions.
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Re: The IRB should block Israel

Postby Canalina » Sun, 13 Jul 2014, 08:28

In last days I had a brief argument on internet related to this and concerning the news about algerian soccer players donating their big world cup money prize to Gaza kids. The other participants in the discussion plauded the beau geste of the algerians, but I asked (surely they judged me insensible) why donating it all to the Gaza people. Are there not kids suffering even more in Syria, in central Africa cause famine, in the african horn cause famine and war, in Nigeria cause (amongst other things) Boko Haram attacks, in Afghanistan and Iraq cause terrorism? I'm sure that these options never passed in algerian players' minds, cause for a muslim Israel is just the Evil, while criminal acts perpetrated by muslims on muslims or by muslims on other people are just 'normal bad things unfortunately occurring'

I don't want to say that we should ignore the Israeli/Palestine problem as we basically ignore many other conflicts around the world; I just want to say that a more balancing in the indignation would give more strength to the indignation itself
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Re: The IRB should block Israel

Postby Rowan » Sun, 13 Jul 2014, 08:32

Good post, Canalina, but you are mistaken on one point. Wherever Muslims have been able to protest against atrocities and oppression within their own environs, they had done so. Probably the West just doesn't hear about it too much. I've never seen so many demonstrations in my life as I have during my decade in Turkey. & I agree with you about Algeria. Not only Syria is being torn asunder by foreign powers, Algeria itself has been under a brutal and repressive dictatorship ever since the military stepped in to stop an Islamic party winning the elections in 1991 (Egypt now headed down the same road).

Lelopride, sporting bans alone cannot achieve much, and can only ever follow politicial action anyway. In this instance political action has been blocked by persistent American vetoes. Just last night Israel bombs struck a mosque during Ramazan prayers, a centre for the disabled and a charity organisation, killing a number of people and wounding many others. But, while much of the world condemns this outright, Yahoo America typically leads with a story about how Israel is doing its honest best to avoid civilian casualties :shock:

You asked me who I blamed for the crisis in Ukraine, and I replied that I blamed America. The gentlemen's agreement between Reagan and Gorbachev has come to light through the writings of former American politicians, now retired, and also exposed by Wikileaks. No disputing there was a gentlemen's agreement - or 'promise' - not to expand 'one inch east.' But . . .

In February, the US mounted one of its "colour" coups against the elected government in Ukraine, exploiting genuine protests against corruption in Kiev. Vice President Joe Biden came to Kiev, as did CIA Director John Brennan. The shock troops of their putsch were Ukrainian fascists. For the first time since 1945, a neo-Nazi, openly anti-Semitic party controls key areas of state power in a European capital. Since the collapse of the Soviet Union, the United States has ringed Russia with military bases, nuclear warplanes and missiles as part of its Nato Enlargement Project. A Nato Membership Action Plan is Washington's gift to the coup-regime in Kiev. In August, "Operation Rapid Trident" will put American and British troops on Ukraine's Russian border and "Sea Breeze" will send US warships within sight of Russian ports. Imagine the response if these acts of provocation, or intimidation, were carried out on America's borders. In reclaiming Crimea - which Nikita Kruschev illegally detached from Russia in 1954 - the Russians defended themselves as they have done for almost a century. More than 90 per cent of the population of Crimea voted to return the territory to Russia. Crimea is the home of the Black Sea Fleet and its loss would mean life or death for the Russian Navy and a prize for Nato. Confounding the war parties in Washington and Kiev, Vladimir Putin withdrew troops from the Ukrainian border and urged ethnic Russians in eastern Ukraine to abandon separatism


Should America be banned from international sports for this? Good question. A stronger case against them exists in the illegal invasion and inevitable oblliteration of Iraq, with over a million deaths resulant, and millions more wounded, displaced, psychologically traumatised or otherwise severely effected by that debacle based on lies. Certainly a case exists there, given the Americans themselves boycotted the Moscow Olympics because of the Soviet invasion of Afghanistan. The problem is, of course, no one can block the world's major super power.

Anyway, I do recall that banning SA from sports was a major blow to Apartheid, though delivered only after political action by much of the world (America, particularly, and Thatcher's Britain were less helpful, preferring to focus on the 'terrorist' actions of the ANC). Of course, blocking Israel from international rugby would mean virtually nothing to them. But, as we're on a rugby forum, I thought I'd pose the question, in light of the latest massacre of men, women and children currently going on in beleagured Palestine.
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