WikiLeaks: No Colombian Support for Israel’s Interests

March 22, 2011
Media_httpcache2allpo_dxehdThe Government of Colombia maintains positive relations with Israel, particularly in the defense sector through private Israeli defense contractors. Key areas of cooperation include strategic military advice, special forces training, and arms sales in support of Colombia’s battle against the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia (“FARC”). Economic relations between the two countries outside of defense cooperation remain relatively limited. Colombia’s Jewish community remains small, with only approximately 4,000 members.
Source: WikiLeaks

Reference ID: 08BOGOTA4036
Created: 2008-11-07 20:08
Classification: SECRET
Origin: Embassy Bogota
DE RUEHBO #4036/01 3122013
P 072013Z NOV 08
id: 177430
date: 11/7/2008 20:13
refid: 08BOGOTA4036
origin: Embassy Bogota
classification: SECRET
destination: 08STATE64659
DE RUEHBO #4036/01 3122013
P 072013Z NOV 08
—————– header ends —————-
S E C R E T BOGOTA 004036
E.O. 12958: DECL: 11/07/2018
REF: STATE 64659
Classified By: Political Counselor John Creamer
Reasons 1.4 (b and d)
¶1. (C) The Government of Colombia (GOC) maintains positive
relations with Israel, particularly in the defense sector
through private Israeli defense contractors. Key areas of
cooperation include strategic military advice, special forces
training, and arms sales in support of Colombia’s battle
against the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia (“FARC”).
Economic relations between the two countries outside of
defense cooperation remain relatively limited. Colombia’s
Jewish community remains small, with only approximately 4,000
members. End Summary.
¶2. (S/NF) Colombia’s defense cooperation with Israel cooled
during the 1980s and 1990s, when some Israeli mercenaries
reportedly helped train paramilitary forces in Colombia.
More recently, the GOC has engaged former Israeli military
officials to help provide training and advice in the fight
against the FARC and other terrorist groups. A contact
within the Colombian Ministry of Defense (MOD) told us that
this new relationship dates back to December 2006. Over the
last two years, Embassy officers visiting the MOD and
Colombian military have observed an increased presence of
Israeli advisors.
¶3. (S) Israeli contractors support the GOC through arms
sales, military training, and the provision of strategic
military planning and consulting services. The GOC has also
engaged Israeli contractors to train Colombian special
forces, particularly related to high value targets (HVTs).
In 2005 and 2006, there was significant frustration among
senior Colombian military leadership related to a poor
success rate in killing or capturing HVTs. The GOC
subsequently contracted retired and active duty Israel
Defense Force officers with special operations and military
intelligence backgrounds to help in this regard. Israeli
contractors have also made recommendations to the GOC on
military purchases, joint military operations, and how to
restructure Colombia’s intelligence services.
¶4. (S/NF) Colombia’s Ministry of Defense (MOD) has also
engaged an Israeli company, Global Comprehensive Security
Transformation (Global CST), to help the Colombian government
conduct a strategic assessment of the internal conflict.
Global CST is a security company run by Major Gen (reserve)
Yisrael Ziv, former Director of Operations for the Israel
Defense Forces and a personal acquaintance of Colombian
Minister of Defense Juan Manuel Santos. The assessment is
focused primarily on defeating the FARC and other internal
terrorist and criminal organizations, but also includes an
evaluation of external threats including Venezuela and
Ecuador. The MOD is spearheading the exercise and has named
it the “Salto Estrategico” (Strategic Leap).
¶5. (C) In February 2008, the GOC signed a deal with the
Israeli government to update 24 Kfir C7s to the C10 version.
The GOC is negotiating a possible USD 160 million avionics
upgrade contract with the Israel state-owned company Israel
Aircraft Industries, Ltd. (IAI). The IAI contract would
involve a complete revamping of Colombia’s aging Mirage 5 and
Kfir fighter aircraft. The GOC is also negotiating the
possible purchase of unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) from
IAI, with intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance (ISR)
capabilities. A consortium including IAI is also bidding on
the sale of naval frigates to the GOC. According to an
internal MOD document, roughly 38% (606,773 million Colombian
pesos) of the GOC’s foreign defense purchases went to Israel
in 2007. The GOC arms purchases from Israel have not led to
direct or indirect GOC support to Israel in other political
or economic areas, such as countering Iran, or in supporting
Israeli positions at the United Nations.
¶6. (C) The Jewish community in Colombia is concentrated in
Bogota, with smaller communities in Cali, Barranquilla and
Medellin. The Confederation of Associations of Bogota
represents the Ashkenazi, Sephardic and German Jewish
communities in the country, and there are some nine
synagogues in Colombia. In the mid-1990s, the Jewish
community was estimated to be around 5,500, although many
Jews subsequently left due to violence and economic
instability. An estimated 4,000 Jews currently reside in
Colombia. There are no indications that Colombia’s foreign
policy interests are shaped by the country’s Jewish
¶7. (C) Israel’s economic relations with Colombia remain
relatively limited. Colombian exports to Israel fell 17
percent from 2005 to 2007, dropping from USD 197 million to
USD 164 million. During the same period, Colombian imports
rose 60 percent, increasing from USD 99 million to USD 161
million. Israel ranked as Colombia’s 26th largest trading
partner in 2007. Over 88 percent of Colombian exports to
Israel in 2007 consisted of minerals or hydrocarbons. The
majority of Colombian imports from Israel in 2007 were
divided among the following sectors: arms and ammunition (28
percent); electrical machinery (25 percent); and
non-electrical machinery including boilers (11 percent).
While precise country of origin data for foreign direct
investment (FDI) is difficult to confirm, Israel has not been
a significant source of FDI in Colombia in recent years.
¶8. (S) A previous, comprehensive report prepared by DIA on
relations between Israel and Colombia is being sent to INR
via e-mail.
=======================CABLE ENDS============================

image via

Center for ‘Palestine’ Studies at Columbia University AKA Bir Zeit on the Hudson and taqiyyah

October 17, 2010

Martin Kramer notes that when he first coined the phrase Bir Zeit on the Hudson in 2003, Edward Said’s response was that there were only two ‘Palestinians’ among the 8,000 faculty members at Columbia and that Kramer was a McCarthyite. 

 And yet, as Carl reported earlier this week, there is now a Center for ‘Palestine’ Studies at my alma mater. What happened since? Kramer explains. via

At least the center is in New York.  My college Carnegie Mellon University moved a campus to Qatar.

So how did Columbia go so rapidly from “two Palestinians teaching in a faculty of 8,000 people!” to “a unique concentration of distinguished scholars on Palestine and the Palestinians”? Don’t be shocked, but Edward Said was out to deceive in that 2003 interview. Obviously there were more than two Palestinians back then. But I didn’t invent the nickname Bir Zeit-on-Hudson because of their number. It was meant to evoke precisely the atmosphere of intimidation—anti-Israel intimidation—that would later come to light in the “Columbia Unbecoming” affair.

Now that Columbia boasts of being home to “a unique concentration of distinguished scholars on Palestine” (who “will have a national and global reach”), Bir Zeit-on-Hudson hardly sounds far-fetched. By that, I don’t mean a “terrorist hideout”—those were Said’s words, not mine—but a redoubt of militant Palestinian nationalism in the guise of scholarship. And I mean militant: the affiliates of the new center aren’t only engaged in the positive affirmation of Palestinian identity, but are activists in the campaign to negate Israel. This is obviously the case in regard to Joseph Massad and Nadia Abu al-Haj—their field isn’t Palestine studies, it’s anti-Israel studies—but it’s increasingly true of the new center’s co-director, Rashid Khalidi, Columbia’s Edward Said Professor, an enthusiastic spokesman for the PLO in its terrorist phase and a severe critic of the same leadership in its present phase.
For now, Khalidi is cleverly doing what Said did with his “two Palestinians” shtick. “We have absolutely no money,” Khalidi said at the launch (attended by an overflow crowd). “What our little modest center will be able to do may be some narrow, specific things,” he reassured a journalist from the Jewish Forward. I’m not buying it, and I think that the moniker Bir Zeit-on-Hudson is too modest to convey the scope of the ambition behind this project. So I’m working on an alternative. For a preview, click on the thumbnail or here.

Make sure to follow that last link – especially if you went to Columbia or Barnard. It will give you a new perspective on the campus. Heh. Khalidi has learned the practice of taqqiyah well.

image of Ayers, Obama and Rashid Ismail Khalidi (Arabic: رشيد خالدي‎) via


Rashid Ismail Khalidi (Arabic: رشيد خالدي‎), born 1948, a Palestinian-American historian of the Middle East, is the Edward Said Professor of Modern Arab Studies at Columbia University,[1] and director of the Middle East Institute of Columbia’s School of International and Public Affairs.

New York High Court Upholds Columbia University Takings

June 25, 2010

In today’s decision in Kaur v. New York State Urban Development Corp.>, The New York Court of Appeals (the state’s highest court) has upheld the condemnation of property in the Manhattanville area of New York City for transfer to Columbia University. This outcome is not surprising. In fact, I predicted it back in December. In the recent Atlantic Yards case, the Court of Appeals had already held that state and local officials could declare virtually any area “blighted” and thereby make it eligible for condemnation and transfer to favored private interest groups.
Nonetheless, there are several extremely troubling aspects of this case. As in Atlantic Yards, The court upheld an extremely dubious “blight” condemnation by applying a rule holding that any area could be declared blighted so long as it might be “underdeveloped.” Indeed, even the presence of “underdevelopment” (a phenomenon that occurs in almost every neighborhood at one time or another) need not actually be proven. Instead, the government need only show that there is “room for reasonable difference of opinion as to whether an area is blighted.” As the lower court opinion in Kaur pointed out, this kind of lax standard would allow the city to declare “[v]irtually every neighborhood in the five boroughs” blighted. And, as I pointed out in this post, the court’s position makes a mockery of the New York state constitution, which allows blight condemnations only in ““substandard and insanitary areas.”
Even worse, the Court of Appeals in Kaur brushed aside or completely ignored extensive evidence showing that the blight study justifying the condemnations had been rigged in Columbia’s favor and that Columbia itself was likely responsible for most of the “blighted” conditions. The key “blight” study was conducted by AKRF, a consulting firm hired by Columbia. As the lower court decision pointed out:

It is critical to recognize that [the state Economic Development Corporation’s] 2002 West Harlem Master Plan which was created prior to the scheme to balkanize Manhattanville for Columbia’s benefit found no blight, nor did it describe any blighted condition or area in Manhattanville. Instead… the Plan noted that West Harlem had great potential for development that could be jump-started with rezoning. It was only after the Plan was published in August 2002 that the rezoning of the “upland” area was essentially given over to the unbridled discretion of Columbia. In little more than a year from publication of the Plan, EDC joined with Columbia in proposing the use of eminent domain to allow Columbia to develop Manhattanville for Columbia’s sole benefit.
This ultimately became the defining moment for the end game of blight. Having committed to allow Columbia to annex Manhattanville, the EDC and [Empire State Development Corporation] were compelled to engineer a public purpose for a quintessentially private development: eradication of blight.
From this point forward, Columbia proceeded to acquire by lease or purchase a vast amount of property in Manhattanville. It is apparent from the record that ESDC had no intention of determining if Manhattanville was blighted prior to, or apart from Columbia’s control of the area…. Throughout this time Columbia not only purchased or gained control over most of the properties in the area, but it also forced out tenant businesses, ultimately vacating, in 17 buildings, 50% or more of the tenants. The petitioners clearly demonstrate that Columbia also let water infiltration conditions in property it acquired go unaddressed, even when minor and economically rational repairs could arrest deterioration. Columbia left Building Code violations open, and let tenants use premises in violation of local codes and ordinances by parking cars on sidewalks and obstructing fire exits, and maintaining garbage and debris in certain buildings over a period of years….
ESDC delayed making any inquiry into the conditions in Manhattanville until long after Columbia gained control over the very properties that would form the basis for a subsequent blight study. This conduct continued when ESDC authorized AKRF to use a methodology biased in Columbia’s favor. Specifically, AKRF was to “highlight” such blight conditions as it found, and it was to prepare individual building reports “focusing on characteristics that demonstrate blight conditions.”
This search for distinct “blight conditions” led to the preposterous summary of building and sidewalk defects compiled by AKRF, which was then accepted as a valid methodology and amplified by Earth Tech. Even a cursory examination of the study reveals the idiocy of considering things like unpainted block walls or loose awning supports as evidence of a blighted neighborhood. 

The Court of Appeals decision completely ignored the fact that Columbia may well have created much of the “blight” that justified the condemnation transferring property to the university. On the issue of the objectivity of the AKRF study, the Court of Appeals opinion claimed that the mere fact that AKRF was employed by Columbia does not disprove the validity of its conclusions, and also notes that those conclusions were validated by a later study conducted by another firm. It does not consider the evidence cited by the lower court showing that the methdologies of both studies were deliberately biased in Columbia’s favor.
It is perhaps worth noting that AKRF was also the firm that conducted an equally dubious blight study justifying the Atlantic Yards takings. In that case, the blight study and takings were heavily influenced by politically influential developer Bruce Ratner, the originator of the development project in question.
The Court of Appeals also makes much of claims that the Columbia project will produce important public benefits by creating jobs and other economic payoffs. However, there is little if any proof that the condemnation of these particular properties (which are only a small part of the total area where Columbia wants to build) is actually needed to produce those benefits. Moreover, as I point out in this article, private interest groups and local governments routinely inflate such estimates because once the property is condemned, they are not legally required to actually produce the economic gains that supposedly justified the condemnation in the first place. Based on past experience, it would not be at all surprising if Columbia ultimately fails to produce more than a small fraction of the benefits it now predicts.
The problem of over-broad definitions of blight is hardly limited to New York. It is present in numerous other states too, including many that have enacted post–Kelo eminent domain reform laws. Nonetheless, the Atlantic Yards and Kaur cases set a new low in this field. Not only has the New York Court of Appeals applied an extraordinarily broad definition of blight, it has also endorsed blight designations based on studies that are probably rigged in favor of private interests who benefit from condemning the areas in question. Moreover, it has opened the door to condemnations based on the presence of “blight” created by the very people who will get to own the property after it is taken.

too many loop holes for anyone to take anything away

Posted via email from noahdavidsimon’s posterous

Leave a Comment » | Columbia College, Columbia University, Eminent domain | Permalink
Posted by Noah Simon

The Franklin Prophecy

June 24, 2010

here is my ancestor Soloman Isaacs. 

Solomon Isaacs was related to the most powerful, respected Sephardic families in America through his marriage to Elkalah Kursheedt, granddaughter of Gershom Mendes Seixas, “The Patriot Rabbi,” and his sister Frances’s marriage to the copper magnate Harmon Hendricks. (Seixas was one of the few clergymen invited to officiate at George Washington’s inauguration and was a trustee of Columbia College.) Apprenticed to his brother-in-law, Isaacs learned all aspects of copper manufacturing, from appraising foreign metals to understanding the processes of refining and rolling. His expertise and ability to supervise engineers and mill hands led to a partnership with Hendricks, who reactivated the defunct Soho Copper Works in New Jersey. Isaacs was entrusted with Hendricks’s longstanding account with Paul Revere & Sons. The firm also supplied Robert Fulton with copper for his pioneering steamboats and the United States Navy with copper sheathing for warships.


Without my family the Revolution would not of had any metal.

so my Jewish ancestor was friends with George Washington and Paul Revere.  This painting was in my family when I was growing up.  Sol here married the granddaughter of the rabbi during the Revolution.

…but now my enemies in the Arab world are changing documented U.S. history.  BTW… Jewish geneology is well documented. 

“The Franklin Prophecy”, sometimes called “The Franklin Forgery”, is an antisemitic speech falsely attributed to Benjamin Franklin, warning of the supposed dangers of admitting Jews to the nascent United States. The speech was purportedly transcribed by Charles Cotesworth Pinckney during the Constitutional Convention of 1787, but was unknown before its appearance in 1934 in the pages of William Dudley Pelley’s pro-Nazi weekly magazine Liberation. (Pinckney wrote that he had kept a journal of the Convention, but it has never been found, and Pelley’s claims that it was printed privately, and that the Franklin Institute has a manuscript copy, are unsubstantiated.)
Despite having been repeatedly discredited since its first appearance, the “prophecy” has proved a remarkably durable canard, returning most recently as a popular internet hoax promulgated on Usenet groups and antisemitic websites, where it is presented as authentic. On February 18, 1998, a member of the Fatah Central Committee revived this myth and mistakenly referred to Franklin as a former President of the United States.[1] Osama Bin Laden has even used this canard briefly in his October 2002 “Letter to the American People.”[2] While its author is not known, many who have investigated the “prophecy” suspect Pelley of having penned it himself.
The U.S. Congress report Anti-Semitism in Europe: Hearing Before the Subcommittee on European Affairs of the Committee on Foreign Relations (2004) states:

This article, which thoroughly documents the history of
the transparent fraud known as the Franklin “Prophecy”, appeared almost forty-five years ago in the April-May 1954
issue of Facts, a publication of the Anti-Defamation League. At the time, the authors wrote “This 20-year-old anti-Semitic hoax is circulating again.” Today, more than sixty-five years after it was manufactured, the “Prophecy” it is still circulating, a staple of anti-Semitic propaganda. It can be found on a number of web sites maintained by haters and hate-groups. The article is, therefore, still timely and instructive

Another anti-Semitic hoax on history, of a piece with that incredible forgery, The Protocols of The Learned Elders of Zion, but not as widely distributed nor as successful in creating the pogrom atmospheres that were the achievements of the Protocols, is a speech attributed to Benjamin Franklin during the Constitutional Convention of 1787. The anti-Semitic movement, which founded the hoax, calls it the Franklin Prophecy — ascribing to Franklin a dire warning that unless Jews were expelled from the new nation by Constitutional decree they would ultimately immigrate in great numbers to the detriment of the Christian population.

Of course, no such speech was ever made. But the hoaxers sought to impart an aura of historical credibility to the fake by claiming that the speech is quoted in a “private diary” of Charles Pinckney, Revolutionary leader who was delegate from South Carolina to the Constitutional Convention. They also maintain that the diary is now in the possession of the Franklin Institute in Philadelphia, a bald lie which Henry Butler Allen, director of the Institute, has often refuted. Allen says that “historians and librarians have not been able to find [the diary] or any record of it having existed.”

A copy of the forgery was anonymously circulated through the mails this month [May 1954] on stationery captioned WAR DEPARTMENT, OFFICE OF THE CHIEF OF STAFF. The envelope bore a May 3 postmark from Atlanta, Ga. This is the latest in a series of recent incidents that suggest another revival of the Prophecy. A copy was picked up earlier this year at a Tampa, Fla., bus stop, and there have been recent distributions of it in Nebraska, Pennsylvania and Alabama.

The Franklin “Prophecy” is a classic anti-Semitic canard that falsely claims that American statesman Benjamin Franklin made anti-Jewish statements during the Constitutional Convention of 1787. It has found widening acceptance in Muslim and Arab media, where it has been used to criticize Israel and Jews…[3]

Franklin was, in fact, a friend to the Jews of 18th-century America,[4] and contributed toward the building of Philadelphia’s first permanent synagogue.[5]
There have been similar false antisemitic quotations attributed to George Washington which have been debunked. In fact, in 1790, in a marked sign of religious tolerance, Washington sent a letter to the Jewish community in Rhode Island, writing “May the Children of the Stock of Abraham, who dwell in this land, continue to merit and enjoy the good will of the other Inhabitants; while every one shall sit under his own vine and fig tree, and there shall be none to make him afraid.

here are what says Benjamin Franklin said about George Washington.

“I fully agree with General Washington, that we mustprotect this young nation from an insidious influence and impenetration.The menace, gentlemen, is the Jews.
“In whatever country Jews have settled in any greatnumber, they have lowered its moral tone; depreciated its commercialintegrity; have segregated themselves and have not been assimilated;have sneered at and tried to undermine the Christian religionupon which that nation is founded, by objecting to its restrictions;have built up a state within the state; and when opposed havetried to strangle that country to death financially, as in thecase of Spain and Portugal.
“For over 1,700 years, the Jews have been bewailingtheir sad fate in that they have been exiled from their homeland,as they call Palestine. But gentlemen, did the world give it tothem in fee simple, they would at once find some reason for notreturning. Why? Because they are vampires, and vampires do notlive on vampires. They cannot live only among themselves. Theymust subsist on Christians and other people not of their race.
“If you do not exclude them from these United States,in their Constitution, in less than 200 years they will have swarmedhere in such great numbers that they will dominate and devourthe land and change our form of government, for which we Americanshave shed our blood, given our lives our substance and jeopardizedour liberty.
“If you do not exclude them, in less than 200 yearsour descendants will be working in the fields to furnish them substance, while they will be in the counting houses rubbing theirhands. I warn you, gentlemen, if you do not exclude Jews for alltime, your children will curse you in your graves.
“Jews, gentlemen, are Asiatics, let them be born wherethey will nor how many generations they are away from Asia, theywill never be otherwise. Their ideas do not conform to an American’s,and will not even thou they live among us ten generations. A leopardcannot change its spots. Jews are Asiatics, are a menace to thiscountry if permitted entrance, and should be excluded by this Constitutional Convention.”

 …every document refutes this.  Our founding fathers loved the Jewish people.  In fact Hamilton was a Jew from the Bahamas… who was probably related to Sol.  Thomas Jefferson was no Christian himself and followed a world view that was deist.  Thsee types of guys were enlightened minds.  Jefferson even read a Quran and knew exactly what kind of hate was in there so he could understand the Barbary Pirates.  There founders of America would of never said such things.

Leave a Comment » | Benjamin Franklin, Charles Cotesworth Pinckney, Columbia College, Fatah, Franklin Prophecy, George Washington, Gershom Mendes Seixas, Harmon Hendricks, Sephardic, Soloman Isaacs, William Dudley Pelley | Permalink
Posted by Noah Simon