What do Malaysia, New Zealand, Pakistan and Egypt have in common?
In the past week, all four countries have been abuzz with conspiratorial news stories suggesting that Israel has been maliciously meddling in their internal affairs.
First up, Pakistan. As elderofziyon.blogspot.com reported on July 19, ongoing violent clashes between different ethnic groups in Karachi, Pakistan’s largest city, resulted in scores of dead. According to news reports Pakistan’s Interior Minister Rehman Malik said Israeli-made weapons were found on suspects arrested by security forces.
“Over 200 persons have been arrested and Israel-made weapons, including AK-45s, have been recovered from them. This proves that a foreign hand is behind the unrest in Karachi,” Malik said, although he hedged his bets by not directly blaming Israel as the instigator of the conflict. But the inference was enough for an editorial in the Nation to warn that some readers may be “unaware of the machinations of the Zionists, but to the informed it was no news.”
Having alerted the heretofore gullible and less well informed, the editorial spelt out what the Interior Minister really meant:
They have always believed, not merely suspected, that not only Israel, but also a wider nexus that brings India and the US into the fold, has been at work stirring up trouble in Pakistan as well as, particularly, other Muslim lands, which could serve their strategic designs of the dominance of certain regions of the world to enable them to appropriate their resources for exploitation.
Not all media outlets, however, accepted the government’s guff with Karachi-based Dawn.com calling Malik’s claim “the classic Pakistani conspiracy theory of blaming those mysterious ‘foreign hands’.”
Elsewhere, Middle East analyst Barry Rubin blogged on July 20 that the Muslim Brotherhood in Egypt is warning how Israeli agents are fomenting counterrevolutionary activity, which explains why protests are still ongoing in Tahrir Square.
Almasry al-Hayoum in Egypt reported that the Muslim Brotherhood’s official news outlet, Ikhwan Online, claimed that the remnants of the dissolved National Democratic Party, the state security apparatus and their Zionist allies are trying to destabilize Egypt by infiltrating an ongoing sit-in protest in Cairo’s Tahrir Square.
The Muslim Brotherhood website “reported on July 11 that at the July 8 rally, protesters in Tahrir Square caught three “thugs” carrying knives and foreign currencies.”
The three men allegedly “had a tattoo of the Star of David, a Jewish symbol, which also appears on the Israeli flag”.
Other evidence pointing to signs of Israeli intrigue included the alleged discovery of bombs and tear gas canisters marked with the Star of David on “a satellite television reporter who was inciting protesters against the police and encouraging demonstrators to storm the Ministry of Interior”.
And the rationale for Israel’s machinations according to the Muslim Brotherhood?
Ikhwan Online quoted Major General Mohammed Abdul Lateef Tolba, a security expert, as saying “The Western countries, including the United States and Israel, want to derail the revolution because Arab revolutions limit Western influence in the region, thwart attempts to control the Middle East and deplete its resources.”
Meanwhile, on July 18, the government-backed Malaysia daily newspaper Utusan, warned that a rally of 20,000 people calling for electoral reform on July 9 was an opportunity for “foreign Jews” to undermine the country’s good governance.
Israel’s Ynetnews quoted from the Utusan editorial that Malaysians “cannot allow anyone, especially the Jews, to interfere secretly in this country’s business,” and that “Muslims and Malaysians should not allow any party, especially the Jews, to discreetly interfere in the country’s administration.”
This follows widespread media speculation in New Zealand that an Israeli killed in the Christchurch earthquake might have been a Mossad spy as reported on this blog yesterday.