Saturday, January 9, 2010

Herald on Minto et al

Again from Granny, this time from its editorial:
The noisy megaphone demonstrations mounted outside the Auckland Tennis Centre during the women's international ASB Classic this week have been a disgraceful act by a few protesters, a gross infringement on the rights of spectators and players, and an embarrassment to the city and the country.
Can't disagree with that opening paragraph.

Where else in the world would a young sportswoman face that sort of abuse for the actions of her country?

Can't figure out if that's somehow a compliment on our democracy or a slur on the zealots!

The protests might have been more understandable if Shahar Peer had been representing Israel - if, for example, she had been playing in a Davis Cup tie between Israel and New Zealand. But she was competing as a professional sportswoman, one largely accustomed to playing on a worldwide circuit without disturbance and to a standard that has earned her a career-high ranking of 15.

She cannot help where she was born, or who her parents were, or if her country has military conscription from the age of 18.

Seen from such an international perspective, the Auckland protests can only be viewed as the work of misguided zealots. From the start, the protesters should have been allowed to make their point and then been moved on.
I'm not generally in favour of "moving them on". They are entitled to protest, even it it was misguided and obnoxious. But I was there on one of the days and it was very annoying and disturbing as a spectator. I am sure the other players felt likewise: the noise was endless.

Shahar Peer, her fellow players and spectators also have their rights. This has sometimes been overlooked in the wake of the protests that so disrupted the 1981 Springbok tour. As it was, a diffident police reaction emboldened the protesters. Finally, on Thursday, after three warnings, more decisive action was taken. Arrests were made and loud-hailers confiscated.

Yes, they do have rights too - the right to watch great sport in peace after paying lots of money to enjoy the benefit. And Minto et al have a corresponding duty to ensure their rights are not infringed. That's how rights work. But Minto and Co. couldn't care less about anyone except their misguided and embarrassing "protest".

The irony was, of course, that Shahar Peer seemed to thrive on being the subject of such protest, even while admitting it was difficult "emotionally" to listen to the chanting. She demonstrated a temperament and fortitude that her distracted opponents were unable to match. On that level, as on so many others, the protesters scored a spectacular own-goal.

She was outstanding. I hope she comes back.

Her gutsy response to the protests here will ensure she receives a warm welcome if she returns to Auckland for a fifth time, even from those who oppose or harbour doubts about the policies of the Israeli Government.

Yes, she should receive a standing ovation.

The police should play their part in that by responding firmly but fairly to any protests.

Yep. This issue won't go away. Minto will be back, along with his rent-a-crowd mob that simply look for issues to get them five minutes of attention, and a front page photo on the Herald.


WAKE UP said...

Minto’s obsessions have now skewed his judgement to the point where he can't tell the difference between national teams, representing their respective nations, playing a national sport, and a lone female tennis player, representing nobody but herself, in an open, individual, professional event (in a sport in which, ironically, team and national events are comparatively rare). He's a sad bastard, bit like Al Gore really, desperately looking for an issue and some attention.

JC said...

Jews, Japs and Jappies. Minto et al are nothing if not predictable.


Inventory2 said...

Until the MSM mans up and tells these rag-tag misfits to take a hike, Minto and co will continue to attract a level of publicity disproportionate to whatever there beef is on any given day. It is the free publicity from a compliant media that gives Minto and his mates oxygen. And whilst I'm reluctant to criticise the Police, they do allow extraordinary liberties to be taken before acting with commendable restraint. Perhaps the good men and women of the NZ Police should give the rent-a-mob a reason or two complain about the "police state"!!!

Anonymous said...

So you would have had no problem with apartheid South African individual athletes competing round the world and in NZ?

Because clearly we should only have demonstrations against players in teams? Or wearing their national colours?

What about when Shahar Peer says she is 'serving her country' by playing tennis? (and her bank balance). What about when when does military propaganda posters? None of that is compulsory - she is proud to serve an apartheid state.

A boycott applies to all people - it is social exclusion to force change when other methods have failed. It is normally only done when the oppressed people (Palestinians in this case) have asked for it - they have.

Anonymous said...

Aaaah, Inventory2. So the police should rough up protesters eh? Takes you back to your apartheid Sprinbok tour days huh? Keep hanging onto your aggression.

Medusa said...

Good grief.... if you are so bloody clever you should know that it is Jaapies ya dumb buggers, haven't ANY of you been to South Africa??
(just being pedantic *winks*)

Inventory2 said...

Anonymous - no. I'm not calling for baton charges or the like. It was merely a suggestion that the Police were exceedingly patient towards Minto and co, and treated them with far more dignity than rent-a-mob showed towards a visitor to these shores.

pdm said...

Anon1 and anon 2 - one of you must be Property Zealot identify yourself although you are both singing from the same sheet.

Last week in Surrey Keys shopping centre London I saw a young man slapped in hand cuffs for no apparrent reason. From what I read, including the Herald Editorial the NZ Police had good cause to do the same to Minto and his idiot followers as soon as they show up.

They don't - just like they didn't prosecute Labour accolyte Richards for assault.

I am sure that is what INV2 means.

Anonymous said...

@ pdm - when people get handcuffs slapped on them for no apparent reason, that IS close to a police state! NZ police have that right only if they have reasonable belief the arrested person is about to commit a crime. Not just because they turn up to demonstrate.

Oh, and who the heck is Property Zealot? I'm not he/she.

@ Inventory2 - John Minto had a lengthy correspondence last year with Shahar Peer's dad. I don't think that would have happened if he was 'rude to a guest to NZ', do you?

Most Israeli's understand demos, even if they hate being on the receiving end of them... pity some Kiwis daftly see any demo as bullying, instead of freedom of expression.

I note no-one has yet said whether they would have had no problem with apartheid South African individual athletes competing round the world and in NZ?

I note too that Shahar Peer has:
- served in the Israeli military, which illegally occupies Palestinian land, and kills Palestinian civilians
- did propaganda posters for the Israeli military - not comulsory ;(
- says she is 'serving her country' when playing tennis
- claims she wants peace, but doesn't appear to want to do anything to help make peace happen.

Peace does not usually break out unilaterally - both sides must work for it. Shahar Peer is doing nothing - perhaps she thinks other Israelis (like Gush Shalom and refuseniks) should do all the work for her?

pdm said...

anon 1.01am - even if you are not Property Zealaot I have no idea which one of the earlier anons you are. Get a nom de plume please.

I suspect the guy I saw had been shoplifting given the area he was being handcuffed. Certainly from what I see in England it is not a Police State.

The rest of your post does not in any way justify the actions of Minto and his cronies disrupting the tennis - incidently you seem close to him - were you one of the `rag tag' rabble with him?

WAKE UP said...

Anonymous 4.52: I assume that you are generally proud of your country (whichever it is), obedient to its laws if they are just, and willing to take issue where they may not be; in other words, "normal" - or is that a crime if your name is Shahar Peer? She's an ordinary citizen (albeit an achiever), and her presence in Auckland, and the capacity in which she is here, represents NOBODY but herself.

Minto is wasting his time, his mob's time, and for that matter, my time - in fact, I don't why I'm even bothering to write this. As Peer was quoted in the paper today: "It's a shame that somebody thinks it's my fault there are problems in the world".

Anonymous said...

young sportswoman face that sort of abuse for the actions of her country?

I wasn't impressed with the protest either but to be fair - this "young sportswoman" served in the Zionist armed forces illegally occupying Palestine, an armed forces that is guilty of crimes against humanity, peace and war crimes.

Secondly, they aren't the actions of "her country" they're the actions of the Zionist entity. Israel is a "country" in the same sense that Al Qaeda is.

Anonymous said...

You talk a colossal amount of utter shit Anon.


WAKE UP said...

Late entry: I just picked this up on Pamela Geller's "Atlas Shrugs" blog:
"Increasing the Security Dilemma"
Embattled Peer stuns top-seed in Dubai.

Shahar Peer increased the security dilemma surrounding her presence in the United Arab Emirates by producing a stunning 6-2 7-5 win over the top-seeded Caroline Wozniacki to reach the quarter-finals of the Dubai Open. The former Israeli soldier is the first woman athlete from her country to compete in the UAE and all three of her matches have been scheduled in the easier-to-protect outside courts. But after victories over Yanina Wickmayer, the 13th seed, Virginie Razzano, last year's runner-up, and now Wozniacki, the world number three from Denmark, the pressure to take the risk of scheduling her on the centre court has increased. With Hamas having alleged that a founder member of its organisation was assassinated last month, and fears of tit-for-tat reprisals, Peer has been operating with guards everywhere, separate changing facilities, cameras filming everyone coming in and out of the arena, and secret interviews at hidden locations.
But once again she played with an icy intensity redolent of someone having a cause beyond herself and, apart from slightly wavering in the second set, she was more consistent, more tactically varied, and more calmly determined than the favourite."
Sigh...and so it goes on. Minto had/has no idea what he's doing.